The Miami Marlins had their first full-squad workout yesterday, and get into their first non-intrasquad game this coming Saturday.
In addition to their 40-man roster, the Miami Marlins also have 25 non-roster invitees in camp. With a total of 32 pitchers on hand. Jeff Brigham is one of the 21 on the protected 40-man roster. What kind of chance does he have to graduate to the Opening Day 26-man roster?
Brigham is a six-foot, 200 lb. right-handed pitcher and a native of Federal Way, WA. Born 28 years ago earlier this week, he was initially drafted in the fourth round of the 2014 MLB Amateur Entry Draft, with the 129th overall choice by the Los Angeles Dodgers out of the University of Washington. In his final season of Division 1 ball, he was 7-4 with a 2.90 ERA over 16 starts, with a 1.13 WHIP to his credit.
Over his first calendar year as a professional baseball player, Brigham split his time between the Rookie-level Ogden Raptors, the Single-A Great Lakes Loons, and the High-A Rancho Cucamonga Quakes. At the 2015 trade deadline, he came over to the Miami Marlins system in a 12-player trade.
After joining the Marlins affiliate system, Brigham worked his way up through to make his major league debut when rosters expanded in 2018. He started four games for the Marlins, going 0-4 with a 6.06 ERA and more walks (13) than strikeouts (12).
In 2019, Brigham acquitted himself a little better at the major league level for the Marlins out of the bullpen. He appeared in 32 games, striking out 39 in 38 1/3 innings while walking only 14. He was 3-2 with a 4.46 ERA and a 1.304 WHIP.
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Statcast ranks Brigham in the top six percent of the majors in fastball velocity. It sits around 97 MPH and occasionally touches 99. It’s one of two pitches in Brigham’s arsenal, along with an 83 MPH slider. He throws each of his offerings more or less evenly, 51 percent fastball and 49 percent slider.
Also according to Statcast, Brigham ranks near the top 10 percent of baseball with an average 3.6 inch above average horizontal break and a 1.8 inch above average vertical break on his four-seamer.
Despite that, Brigham may have somewhat of an uphill climb to make the Opening Day roster in a crowded bullpen. If he doesn’t make the cut, the Marlins still have two options remaining to get him back to the Triple-A level, with the Wichita Wind Surge in the Pacific Coast League where he’ll remain on call as needed.
Thanks for reading, and check back here tomorrow for a read on Lewis Brinson.