Throughout the 2018/2019 offseason, Marlin Maniac will devote one article each for every player who appeared in the Miami Marlins system for the 2018 season. Every. Single. Player. This is Part 113 of 286. For the first 100, click here.
Matt Brooks is a 6′, 185 lb. left-handed hitting right-handed throwing outfielder from Auburn, New York. The city of Auburn has produced eight major leaguers to date, but only two in the past 110 years. Kevin Polcovich and Tim Locastro.
Brooks was born on March 21st, 1996, and the Miami Marlins chose him out of Monroe Community College in the 35th round of the 2016 draft. Monroe is a Region XV Junior College for whom Brooks played two seasons. In 90 contests, Brooks slashed .353/.480/.538 with three homers and 57 RBI. He also stole 29 bases in 39 attempts.
Chosen with the 1,043rd overall selection, Brooks faced a playing field slanted against his someday making the major leagues. Only one player of 33 chosen at that position has made it to the top. Nick Buss (2006, Los Angeles Dodgers, -0.5 career WAR) is the only player to make it to date. You can follow Brooks on Twitter @MattBrooks12.
Matt is serious about offseason conditioning.
After signing with the Miami Marlins, Brooks joined the rookie-level GCL Marlins, in the Florida-based Gulf Coast League for the duration of the 2016 campaign. He hit 28-for-142, with no homers and 12 RBI. Brooks collected four doubles and stole two bases in four tries, scoring 24 runs and drawing 18 walks versus 45 whiffs. His .197/.299/.225 slashline clearly needed a northward trend. In the field, he made four errors in 37 chances at second base, for an .892 fielding percentage.
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Despite Brooks’ trials and tribulations at the rookie level, the Miami Marlins promoted him to the short-season-A Batavia Muckdogs in 2017, in the New York-Penn League. In 46 contests for them, mostly in left field, he hit .268/.374/.314, with 23 walks and 31 strikeouts in 183 plate appearances. Brooks had seven doubles and 11 RBI, scored 22 runs, and stole four bases in six tries. Defensively, he turned in a .934 fielding percentage in 362 2/3 innings in the outfield, with one assist and four errors.
2018 would see Brooks spend another season with the Muckdogs, between left field and designated hitter. He batted .212/.282/.257 in 35 contests, with 10 runs scored, three stolen bases in as many attempts, 10 walks and 29 K’s. He also hit his first professional home run, and totaled six RBI on the season. In 120 1/3 innings in left field, he handled 19 chances without an error.
On June 17th, Brooks went four-for-five from the plate, with a run scored and an RBI in a 10-8 loss to the Auburn Doubledays. On August 16th, Brooks hit a double and a pair of singles, scoring a run in an 8-4 victory against the West Virginia Black Bears.
If Brooks remains in the Miami Marlins system for 2019, he should begin the campaign with the Clinton LumberKings, in the single-A Midwest League.
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