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2021 Marlins Season Review: Braxton Garrett

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Used sparingly in 2021, Garrett’s early career lumps continued to rear their ugly head.

Miami Marlins starting pitcher Braxton Garrett (60) throws a pitch against the San Diego Padres during the first inning at Petco Park.  Photo by Orlando Ramirez/USA TODAY Sports

A former first-round pick for Miami in the 2016 Amateur Draft, Braxton Garrett got another taste of big-league action in 2021.

2021 Timeline

  • March 15: Optioned to AAA Jacksonville.
  • May 15: Recalled by Miami from AAA Jacksonville and allows 3 runs over 3 IP in his debut.
  • May 16: Optioned back to AAA.
  • June 8: Recalled again from AAA to start the following day against Colorado.
  • June 15: Optioned to AAA for the third time this season.
  • July 18: Recalled once again to the series finale against Philadelphia.
  • July 19: Demoted following start against Philadelphia.
  • July 24: Recalled for the fourth time to start against San Diego.
  • July 25: Demoted following career-best 10 strikeout performance.
  • August 5: Recalled to start against New York.
  • August 11: Makes final start of the season, allowing career-worst 6 walks over 3-plus innings in 12-2 loss to Atlanta.

By the Numbers

Making a mere 8 appearances in what was literally an up-and-down season for Garrett, the former 7th overall draft pick pitched to a 5.03 ERA over 34 innings pitched. Garrett generated 0.0 rWAR according to Baseball-Reference. The left-hander’s FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching), which factors in outcomes only a pitcher has control over—walks, home runs, and strikeouts—was a bit more encouraging at 4.38.

Garrett made 18 starts for Jacksonville with a 3.89 ERA and 4.13 FIP. He pitched 119 23 innings combined between the two levels, which established a new single-season best for him as a professional.

Zeroing in on the advanced metrics, courtesy of Baseball Savant, Garrett lacks overpowering stuff. His fastball averaged just a tick over 90 mph. Any success he experiences is greatly predicated on his ability to locate his primary and secondary offerings.

However, the 24-year-old did hasn’t exhibited much command yet in his multiple stops in Miami. In 41 23 career innings at the Major League level, Garrett owns a career 5.4 BB/9—again, not ideal for a pitcher who finished in the 11th percentile in fastball velocity.

Braxton Garret’s percentile rankings, 2021
Baseball-Savant

Highlights

Will Garrett Be Back in 2022?

Kim Ng’s comments at the conclusion of the season lead many to believe the 2021-22 offseason will be a busy one in South Beach. Garrett’s minor league career could give the Marlins some optimism that he’s capable of much more effectiveness, but are they patient enough to find out what he will ultimately become or ready to trade him to acquire an impactful veteran bat?

Should the team hold onto their starting pitching depth, then Garrett’s role with the team remains just that: a depth arm who could provide bulk innings in the wake of an injury.