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Phillies' Casey Martin Looks To Take Step Forward In 2022

The Phillies demonstrated their belief in shortstop Casey Martin when they selected him in the third round of the 2020 draft and signed him for $1.3 million, almost double the slot value for the 87th pick.

Martin’s pro career so far has been impacted by the starts and stops of Covid and a bothersome ankle injury. He’s healthy now, will turn 23 in April, and could be primed to step forward in 2022.

“He’s one of the guys in the organization I can’t wait to see more of, as talented as he is,” Phillies farm director Preston Mattingly said. “You get a guy like him—he can run, defend, has power, lots of energy. He just needs reps, needs to play."

As a freshman at Arkansas in 2018, Martin hit .345 with 14 doubles and 13 homers while helping the Razorbacks reach the College World Series. He had the look of an eventual first-rounder, but a hamate surgery before his junior season and concerns over his contact rate gave teams pause.

The Phillies took a shot on the tools, versatility and upside. Martin said his best position is shortstop, but he can play second base and center field. If he hits, there will be plenty of landing spots for him.

Martin got off to a solid start at Low-A Clearwater in 2021 before moving to High-A Jersey Shore and eventually back to Clearwater. He hit under .200 for the season but was not healthy. He had bone spurs removed from his left ankle after the season.

At 5-foot-11, 175 pounds, Martin knows his game is speed-based, and he needs to be on the bases to shine. He is working to reduce his strikeout rate, which was 28% last season.

“I’m working on backing the ball up,” he said. “I tend to get out in front. I try to go out and get it. I’m working on slowing it down a little and bringing the contact point back."

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Casey Martin Stands Out In Minor League Camp

The 22-year-old shortstop starts the season at Low-A Clearwater after showing off his tools in minor league camp.

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