Prospect Profile: Brett Marshall

A stadium scandal and a scoreboard heads south
A mid-afternoon Teixeira question

Brett Marshall | RHP

Marshall grew up in the Houston suburb of Baytown, where he attended Sterling High School, one-time home of Clyde Drexler and fellow Yanks’ farmhand Brett Smith. He didn’t pop up on the prospect scene until his raw arm strength grabbed the attention of scouts during his junior year, when he was unanimously voted to the All-District First Team. He was then named the All-Houston Area Player of the Year as a senior thanks to his 10-2 record and 2.27 ERA. Marshall lost his final start for the Rangers in the Region III-5A semifinals when he hit a batter to force in the winning run with his pitch count at 146.

Marshall had originally committed to San Jacinto Junior College (Andy Pettitte‘s alma mater), but after seeing his draft prospect status increase exponentially his senior year he switched his commitment to Death to Pitchers University Rice to gain negotiating leverage. The Yanks made Marshall their first pick on Day Two of the 2008 Draft, selecting him 200th overall with their sixth round pick. He is the highest drafted player in Sterling history. Marshall signed for an $850,000 bonus just about a week before the signing deadline, roughly $725,000 over slot.

Pro Debut
Marshall was limited to just three starts with the Rookie level GCL Yanks after signing late. He allowed just 2 hits & 2 walks in 6 IP, striking out 8. Not much to see (and if you use those stats to make any kind of judgment on the kid, then … just go away, that’s stupid), although it did give him a taste of professional baseball.

Scouting Report
Marshall is a classic Texas fireballer. As is common these days, he throws both a four and two-seam fastball. His velocity fluctuated during his senior year, starting at 86-88 then jumping to 95-97 before settling into 90-92 range at the end of the year, touching 94. Marshall’s two seamer has filthy armside run when he maintains his arm slot, but it typically lags 2-3 mph behind his four-seamer.

Armed with two breaking balls, Marshall’s slider is a legit put-away pitch. Coming in hard in the mid-to-high 80’s, the pitch can be confused for a splitter because of its sharp break. His curve is promising but still rudimentary. Typical of prep pitchers, Marshall rarely used his change-up in high school, leaving quite a bit of development in it’s future.

A converted shortstop, Marshall’s arm has a limited amount of miles on it, but he lacks experience with his delivery that has some effort to it. His command is decent for a high schooler, but the key to his development is his delivery, which Alex Eisenberg already broke down. Once he settles into a more comfortable and repeatable motion, the command will improve and strikes will come with more ease.

Standing just 6’0″ and 190 lbs, Marshall is a bit undersized but is stronger than he appears. Worked to the bone as a senior, Marshall tired at the end of the year and dropped his arm slot. He needs to work on his ability to hold baserunners, but he fields his position well due to his experience as a position player.

You can see his draft video here.

2009 Outlook
The Yankees haven’t assigned a high school pitcher to a full season league in their first pro season since Phil Hughes & Chris Garcia started 2005 with Low-A Charleston, and it doesn’t appear Marshall will be the one to break that streak. He’ll likely begin ’09 in Extended Spring Training to work on his delivery before joining Short Season Staten Island when their season begins in June.

My Take
Give me upside or give me death, and Marshall certainly has considerable upside. He still has some projection left, so he could add a tick or two to his fastball as he finishes maturing. The raw package is basically everything you could ask for from a prep pitcher: two fastballs with life,  put-away breaking ball and feel for a change-up. I love the pick, and getting the kid for under a million is just icing on the cake.

A stadium scandal and a scoreboard heads south
A mid-afternoon Teixeira question
  • Bo

    Maybe someone can save the disaster that is the 2008 draft

    • T-Dizzle

      he can make up for all the cole pick i hope he does the kid sounds like he could be real legit for the yanks in a few years

    • BBDC

      I think that someone, so far, is Jeremy Bleich, (have you been paying attention to the winter-ball updates?), the lefty from Stanford absolutely dominated the winter league, and is a lot closer to the majors then Marshall (since he already has had college seasoning) and should start the Season in A-Ball and move up quickly if he continues to dominate.

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        Good point. Ultimately, we’ll likely not know if the 2008 draft was a “disaster” or not until around 2018.

        Cole and Bittle could ultimately turn out to be nothings. And remember, it’s not truly a wasted pick because we get the pick back again the following year. So, whomever Cole and Bittle become must also be judged against whomever we get in 2009…

        • AndrewYF

          “Ultimately, we’ll likely not know if the 2008 draft was a “disaster” or not until around 2018.”

          Or, like, 2013.

          The 2008 draft was far from a disaster. There is a lot of highly-talented players in the draft, beyond the obvious ones like Bleich and Marshall. There’s Higashioka, Nik Turley, Lassiter, Mikey O’Brien…

          Just imagine if the 2006 draft were judged solely on not getting Kennedy or McAllister.

  • Chip

    How many innings did he pitch his senior year?

    Seems to be this kid’s future depends on his control. If he can put it together, he can dominate seeing how he already has the “stuff” but worst case ends up being a Veras-type?

  • A.D.

    This kid could be real exciting, especially given how raw he currently is… It’s a shame he and Cole aren’t coming up through the system together.

    I take it from the up to 95-97 means he can hit that (presumably not after 140 pitches) but he goes 90-92 or was 95-97 where he sat before the season wore on & dropped his arm slot?

  • A.D.

    Pretty sweet picture

    • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

      I recall a similar one of Gooden when he was a kid. Wonder how many times they tried it before it worked?

      • JCP

        I also thought the picture almost perfect, but was a little sad that the glove looks so new.

  • Ryan S.

    He’ll be fun to watch out for in the future. Its always interesting to see how the guys with big upside turn out.

  • ryan

    He at least sounds like a great BP arm…..throws 2 fastballs with great movement and a good slider…

    • T-Dizzle

      could be rivera replacement in a few years if he pitches well in the minors and they keep joba starting

      • Mister Delaware

        I thought we’d already annointed Melancon.

        • T-Dizzle

          not everyone works out

          • A.D.


            Melancon is at least in AAA and was a college closer, his probability to work out is far greater

      • Ryan S.


        • T-Dizzle

          what? mo wont be around forever

          • Ryan S.

            It is simply unreasonable to predict some prep kid who isn’t even expected to start in Low-A this year to be the successor to Mo. As a matter of fact, Mariano will probably be retired before this kid even throws his first major league pitch … IF he ever even gets good enough to do that. Let’s just see how he performs over the course of a few years first and take it from there.

            • T-Dizzle

              i used the word could when i originally said what i said so im not saying its definitely gonna happen but i certainly think hes capable if everything goes to plan

              • Ryan S.

                Hey man I didn’t mean to step on your toes or anything, but this kid is not worthy of being spoken about in the same breath as Rivera, simple as that.

            • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

              Look, T-Dizzle is only worried about one thing in life, because only one thing in life is important at all…

              …and that thing is finding a replacement for Mo. Until we have one, and he’s exactly as unbelievably awesome and dominant as Mo, all other problems take a back seat.

              Tex or Manny? No time to worry about that shit now, WE NEED AN HEIR TO MO.

              Joba needs a few years in the rotation of building up his arm strength to become a dominant starter with no innings caps? FUCK THAT, WE NEED AN HEIR TO MO.

              The economy’s in the tank, we need to discuss bailouts and removing our troops from the Iraqi quagmire? NO WE DON’T, WE NEED TO DISCUSS HEIRS TO MO.

              • UWS

                Take it easy, champ. Why don’t you relax, sit this one out?

                • jsbrendog

                  praise be to mo

                • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

                  Mosanna in the highest.

              • T-Dizzle

                dude you take this blog waaaay too serious you overreact to everything everybody says and your usually a jackass for no reason sorry for being optimistic about the team we all want to win geez

                • jsbrendog

                  i would guess he’s just being a smartass. its in good humor. i wouldnt take it seriously or that he thinks you’re dumb for thinking that. come on, you didnt chuckle a little bit at that?

                • T-Dizzle

                  he says unnecessary mean remarks to all kinds of peeps on here not just me and its annoying that everything i say gets some sort of lame sarcastic remark from him when everyone here is a yankees fan and everyone has the right to say their opinion about the team we all cheer for i just dont understand constant rudeness for no reason

                • Ryan S.

                  Ehhh, its the internet, it happens. Seems like the RAB guys do a great job of keeping the posters in line, he’ll get spanked eventually if he crosses the line.

                • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

                  Tough crowd…

                  [ rolls eyes, tugs on necktie ]

                • Ryan S.

                  I actually think you’re pretty funny, but this kid was getting slammed for his Mo comment (and rightfully so)…still, I felt a little guilty.

                • jsbrendog

                  its never a bad thing to think ahead. but thats a bit to far ahead….plus he’s a b-jobber…..or at least said he would support supplanting joba in the rotation for lowe and moving joba to the pen…..oh my.

                • Mulls

                  i laughed man!

  • Old Ranger

    Things go well for him, we have another, in a long list of young guns. Watching some of these guys pitch and growing as the year(s) go by is amazing. may/June they are all over the place, July., they get smacked around, then they find the slot and…it’s pay back time, to the hitters. Their progression is startling at times. I liked this part;—-“but he lacks experience with his delivery that has some effort to it.”—-this is the trouble AJ had until this year. It was one of the reasons he was getting shut down a lot. 27/09.

  • Sweet Dick Willie

    …with his pitch count at 146.

    TJ surgery already scheduled?

    • T-Dizzle

      if its for one start its not a big deal but yea i agree thats never good for 17 year old

    • jsbrendog

      they’re going to take one of pat vendittes arms and switch the right arms of these two guys. then venditte casn just throw lefty

      • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

        In that event, Venditte would just learn to pitch with his foot…

        • jsbrendog

          he already can. there’s only one thing lft to learn to pitch with…….

          • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside


            • jsbrendog

              dude, i meant teeth/mouth. get your head out of the gutter

              • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

                Yeah, right, sure you did.

            • kenthadley

              puts a whole new meaning on “loading one up”…….

  • jsbrendog

    im going to sy what everyone’s thinking:

    “Marshall was limited to just three starts with the Rookie level GCL Yanks after signing late. He allowed just 2 hits & 2 walks in 6 IP, striking out 8.”


    on the serious side, bleich has been a monster and hopefully he continues to steamroll the competition. The nbest thing about it is with a solid rotation in place now he doesn’t have to be rushed. He has up to and possibly including 3-6 or 7 yrs to develop if he needs it

    • Ryan S.

      lulz @ your first comment.

      Isn’t amazing to have great organizational depth for your pitching? Its awesome we can give young arms all the time they need to develop (or to use them are valuable trade chips)

      • jsbrendog

        yes the organizational depth is great but it didnt od us any good last yr because none of it was ready. Now we’re in a great position with cc (minimum 3 yrs, or the max 7), wang (until he either starts sucking or gets permanently injured which I’d say IMO he’s good like he has been for another 4-6 yrs), burnett for 5 (not counting unjury time) and joba for ever because as i said the last time i wrote this he will be striking out 300 ppl a yr for the yankees when he is 40). and a fill in (hopefully pettitte)

        therefore, hoping hughes is ready for fulltime the show next year (which i feel is very reasonable to assume he will be) that gives the guys from short season SI (woop woop staten) to aaa at least 3 more years top develop depending on cc. also with injries which are inevitable those how have a chance to be ready will be given the opportunity.

        Also, at 16.5 per in 3 or 4 yrs that might very well be reasonable for burnett and if we have someone younger and cheaper we could very well trade him and it wouldnt be a big deal

        think about it, the ms have washburn who makes what, something like between 11-14? and if people were wiling to take him last yr then someone will take burnett because

        burnett in 3-4 yrs is still >>>>>>>>>>>>washburn 08

        • Ryan S.

          It didn’t work out for us last year (or the year before) because the movement to make the farm stacked with arms is a recent one, and we didn’t apparently didn’t give it enough time for the guys to fully mature into major league ready starters on a full time basis. This year we’ve successfully limited our dependence on our young, homegrown starters but are still primed to start really using them in 2010 and beyond, while still giving a few of the premiere guys some significant playing time this year, especially Joba. As our projected #6 starter, Hughes is also gonna have some good chances to prove himself this year. I am VERY excited about our pitching for the foreseeable future.

          • jsbrendog

            no offense, but this is exactly what i just wrote above you minus the specifics.

          • Kayp

            Well Alan Horne and Jeff Marques were injured all yr otherwise the yr before they were the next to be called up on the list. I think Horne and marques would have been an upgrade for a shot then igawa or ponson.

  • Mulls

    so whats the charleston 5 gonna be? brett marshall ,arodis vizcaino,manny banuelos? that turley kid taken in the 50th? i find it hard to beleive he’s a legit prospect? i think this draft is banking on marshall, lassiter, joseph and bleich amounting to something..hopefully theyll be blue chippers in a couple of years ..oh yeah dj mitchell to! he might be in charleston.

    • pat

      Turley is a 6’6 lefty with a low 90’s fastball and 2 breaking pitches that have plus potential. He was given a pretty good bonus, he’s definitely a real prospect.

      • Jake H

        I really am looking forward to seeing Turley.

        • pat

          Agreed. Supposedly he is extremely coachable and turned what was basically a changup in theory into a very good albeit inconsistent big league pitch

      • kenthadley

        any relation to Bullet Bob Turley?

    • AndrewYF

      Marshall won’t be in Charleston, didn’t you read the post?

      Turley is also a high school kid, and like Mike said, only Hughes and Garcia are high school kids to make the jump to full season ball.

      Turley is a legitimate prospect, who didn’t go in the first 6 rounds only because teams thought he was locked into college.

      The rotation, and team, really, to look for is the Tampa Yankees.

      Brackman, Betances, Bleich, Heredia, (maybe Pope) in the rotation.

      Montero, Romine, Laird, Snyder, Suttle, (probably)Sublett in the lineup. And maybe Angelini, if he starts hitting while repeating Charleston next year.

      That team is going to be stacked, with a chance of more than a few future Yankee regulars.

      • Miles Roche

        You should probably add Austin Krum to the list. . .

    • Max

      Marshall won’t be starting in Charleston, so I’m not sure how that rotation is possible. Let the HS kids develop and build their arm strength and pitch counts before anointing them as a possible replacement for Mo as T-dizzle has done. The more time they spend in the minors and learn how to pitch effectively the less time we’ll have to baby them in the majors like Joba and Phil.

  • lasso

    Does anyone else think that he looks like a young Paul O’Neil in that picture?

    • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      A little.

      Unfortunately, we’ve already anointed both Nick Swisher and Xavier Nady as “the new Paul O’Neill”. So Marshall has to get in line.

      (Has there ever been another former Yankee that we fans pine for more than ol’ Paulie Walnuts?)

      • AndrewYF

        I thought Ross Ohlendorf was the new Paul O’Neill?

    • Miles Roche

      His picture on Pinstripes Plus reminds me an awful lot of John Travolta. . .

      Anybody seen it?

  • dan

    He’ll probably get roughed up in Staten Island… that seems to happen a lot with HS pitchers. But it will be good for him in the future.

  • dan

    I’m watching his video now…

    -He’s about as slow to the plate as anyone you’ll see at about 28 or 29 frames from max leg lift to release. Average for that is in the low 20’s (I think Oswalt is like 18 or so)
    -He has good pronation through release
    -Delivery looks a lot like A.J. Burnett, especially in the arm action.
    -He lets his elbow get above his shoulder– some people advocate that, other people think it’s bad.
    – His forearm is almost vertical at footplant (when his shoulders begin to turn), that’s a positive.

    Nardi will probably mess with him, so what you see now might not be what you see next summer. But how he throws the ball now, his elbow should probably hold up assuming he doesn’t fall in love with the slider. His shoulder I’m not as confident about, long-term.

    • tommiesmithjohncarlos a/k/a Ridiculous Upside

      You had me at “pronation”…

    • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

      Man, that is a pretty impressive break down there Dan. Thanks.

    • pat

      Hes a kid that just converted to pitcher, he probably made up his own windup. Point is he’s 18, has a live arm and will now get some of the best professional coaching in the world to prevent injuries and maximize velocity.

      • dan

        Just to clarify. I like his overall mechanics much more now than I did the first time. There’s no doubt in my mind that he’ll be much, much quicker to the plate when we finally see him in game action. The only thing that scares me long term is the elbow above the shoulder. From what I’ve seen of the rest of the Yankees prospects (at least the high school ones), they usually don’t have this arm action. So it might be something the Yankees are actively trying to change.

  • ryan

    cant wait to see melancon debut this season

  • http://papajohn john wood

    question????????been reading long time first post. Of course it is great to dream about these younguns however at what point do they make it or what small % make it? we currently have signed CC for 7 AJ for 5, Wang good for at least 3 more, Joba 5+ then Hughes, IPK, Brackman, Betances etc. etc etc I know not all will be here but I dont see the time frame for ANY let alone a few??

  • D.B.H.O.F. the word conservationist

    A friend of mine saw this kid pitch in High School and said it was amazing. The friend of mine is no scout or anything but it was good to hear that he was impressed. Being in Texas and Cali you can really see some top notch young ball players before they leave high school if you have the time.

    • jsbrendog

      he saw it with his own eyes?

      i couldnt resist, it was just right there for the taking lol

      you know you might have something when you see a high school kid pitch and leave going, damn, that kid’s good

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  • LeftyLarry

    Turley sounds promising.
    Why do Yankees appear to like short pitchers so much?
    How many make it and make it big?

  • Hitman

    They’ll need to adjust his mechanics to avoid arm injury.

  • pounder

    Brett Smith did not go to school in Texas.He’s from Irvine Cal.

  • KPS

    I noticed several errors in your profile about Brett. Clyde Drexler did not graduate from Baytown Sterling High School. He went to Houston Sterling High. Baytown Sterling had two individuals that were drafted higher than Brett. Kade Johnson, a catcher, was drafted in the 2nd round by Milwaukee and Dustin Lansford, a pitcher, was drafted inthe 3rd round by Milwaukee in 1998. I agree with you though that Marshall is a great kid with an awesome upside. I have seen him in person and he is the real deal!

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  • leftylarry

    SOuns like MArshall has a chance ot be David Robertson someday.

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