Prospect Report: Lou Marson – Phillies Nation

Prospect Report: Lou Marson

Prospect: Lou Marson
Position: Catcher
Birthday: June 26, 1986
Dimensions: 6-1/195 pounds
Level: AA Reading

Marson has been talk of the town lately. So far this season he’s been one of the major keys to the Reading offense:

41 G, 22 R, 2 HR, 31 RBI, 32 BB, 31 K, .345 AVG, .462 OBP, .460 SLG

The second-leading hitter in the Eastern League, Marson finds the bases. He’s been on base 50 percent of the time in May, according to Baseball America’s weekly Ten Pack. The report also says he’s thrown out 39 percent of would-be base stealers. Very impressive.

The right-handed-hitting Marson, a fourth-round draft pick in 2004, has made the standard climb of the ladder, starting at age 18 in the Gulf Coast League and moving each year to a new venue. In Clearwater he finished with a .288 average and .373 OBP. Not bad. This year he has broken out and is starting to project as an everyday catcher along the lines of Mike Lieberthal. Meanwhile, he’s been handling the same big-prospect pitchers (Carlos Carrasco, Josh Outman) for the past few years, and they’ve been consistently good. He seems to have found his all-around game.

Estimation: Marson is probably a full year away from contributing to the Phillies. Looking at the Phils’ situation, Carlos Ruiz and Chris Coste are both arbitration eligible after this season. It’s possible one will be here next year, one won’t. If so, it’s likely the Phils would bring Jason Jaramillo up as a backup for a short while, before Marson is ready. Then again, Marson could be ready by Opening Day 2009. No matter what, he should be up for good by midseason ’09.

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  1. Lewisauce

    May 28, 2008 at 2:03 pm

    I’d love to see them keep Coste and dump Ruiz after this season. That’s not to say Ruiz is a bad player. It’s just to say that Coste has historically (last year and this year) contributed more than Ruiz. He’s also got that ‘everyman’ quality that we all can identify with, and he might even come cheaper than Ruiz.

    Is the front office bright enough to see this? Unlikely, but it would be great.

  2. Geoff

    May 28, 2008 at 2:50 pm

    I like ruiz, hes a hard worker, but id rather promote a young player and develop him…like lou marson. maybe you can get something for ruiz, mid-level prspect or something. i like coste and marson for next season

  3. Mike W.

    May 28, 2008 at 2:52 pm

    The Phillies should not let Coste go to another organization ever, in any capacity. He should be the backup for his remaining playing days, and then a coach. Ruiz stinks. There is nothing Ruiz does better than Coste, except run.

  4. Josh

    May 28, 2008 at 3:44 pm

    If Marson really looks that good, would you think about trying to trade Ruiz for some pitching help around the trade deadline? I agree with Mike about next season, but we’re also trying to win now. I’m conflicted about whether that would be the right move for this year, assuming Marson won’t be ready until Spring at the earlier.

  5. Lewisauce

    May 28, 2008 at 3:56 pm

    I’d trade Ruiz without even thinking if it could bring us some immediate pitching help. I just don’t think there’s anyone out there who will give up a pitcher of any sort of major-league capacity for Carlos Ruiz. (Am I right?)

    And someone said Ruiz is a free agent after this year. We’d have to maybe try to sell him to a contender that is willing to give up pitching … Josh, good idea. I just don’t see it happening.

    We’d have to give up someone of higher value, ala Vic, to get pitching …

  6. Geoff

    May 28, 2008 at 3:59 pm

    well id try to trade ruiz for pithcing, but i dont thik ruiz is good enough to get anything other than a bullpen arm in return. i think a platoon of ruiz and coste might be able to get you through the playoffs. then you might be able to capitalize inflated value. there no other option for this season at catcher than ruiz and coste. id let it ride until the offseason then try and flip ruiz.

    maybe you could throw ruiz into a team that desperately needs a catcher, i dunno, but hed have to be part of a package.

  7. Mike M.

    May 28, 2008 at 4:55 pm

    In Ruiz’s defense, he is a much better defensive catcher than Coste. He has a great arm and has worked well with the pitching staff. Coste has a much better OPS and what he lacks in defense, he makes up for in pure hitting. If pressed, I would keep Ruiz because I’m not sure if Coste can handle an everyday role as he ages rapidly, for a catcher that is. Jaramillo had a lot of optimism surrounding him early in his minor league career, but as of now, he seems to be much less important to the Phillies. It doesn’t help that Jaramillo is batting an anemic .210.

    In terms of acquiring pitching for Ruiz or Coste, the whole league is strapped for pitching so it will take a lot in order to get a mediocre starter. Plus, both of these catchers are freeg agents so if we lose one then we might a B level draft sandwhich pick for one of them. Therefore, I don’t believe either of these catchers will or should be traded.

  8. Mike W.

    May 28, 2008 at 6:07 pm

    While I cannot attest for the fact that Ruiz is better in pure defensive abilities (i.e. blocking the plate), I guess I would believe it. However, when it comes to throwing runners out, Coste sure seems superior to me.

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