Footwork is a vital characteristic for many prospective athletes. In the case of Mets’ third round draft choice Quinn Brodey, that attribute developed on the soccer field at Loyola High School in California and provided him with agility and a quick first step to play each outfield position.
“I used to play soccer and baseball when I was younger,” Brodey said. “Baseball definitely took from soccer and helped me become a better athlete in terms of staying balanced, especially in the batter’s box. It also allowed me to make better reads in the outfield and on the basepaths, where you need quick reflexes.”
Originally a 37th round selection by the Washington Nationals out of high school in 2014, Brodey opted to attend the University of Stanford and spent his freshman season as a two-way player, making ten relief appearances and had north of 100 at-bats as a position player. The decision to focus exclusively on the outfield came shortly after and helped accelerate his overall growth.
“After my freshman season, heading into my sophomore fall year, I decided to just hit. I think from then it’s been great to be able to further my development with hitting and playing defense. The more reps you get, the better you become, and I think I adjust and adapt quickly as a player.”
The most notable progression for Brodey came before his junior season in the Cape Cod League, where he hit .326 in 37 games with a .845 OPS. His experiences in the league eventually resulted in a spot on the Golden Spikes Award preseason watch list as he emerged into one of the top hitters in the Pac-12 and subsequently led the Cardinal in every major offensive statistical category.
“The Cape Cod League is where you face the best college players,” Brodey said. “Everybody is really good defensively and also on the mound. It is great competition day in and day out, and it has the feeling of a major league season since you are playing almost every day. It was a great experience waking up every day just knowing that you are playing and preparing for a game.”
Since its inception, the Stanford Cardinal name transcends college baseball with 16 College World Series appearances and an alumni list which features individuals such as Mike Mussina and Jack McDowell who left their marks in the major leagues. The legacy endures with each passing season, and Brodey shared his Stanford tenure with highly touted products Tristan Beck and Matt Winaker, the latter of which also serves as his teammate with the Brooklyn Cyclones.
“Stanford recruits really good students and athletes based on the name itself and then when you get there, you are surrounded by incredible coaches and teammates that will push you to succeed,” Brodey said. “The university gives you everything you need, and if you run with those things, you will be in good shape. I also had the opportunity to talk with (Cardinals outfielder) Stephen Piscotty when he returned for a visit this year.”
This past spring had a sentimental feeling for both Brodey, and the Stanford baseball program as the legendary head coach Mark Marquess retired after 40 seasons. Upon his retirement, Marquess ranks in the top ten in wins by a Division 1 head coach and is a member of the Stanford Athletic Hall of Fame. Various alumni also paid visits to the school in tribute to the outgoing head coach.
“It was a really special year since a lot of alumni came back, but Coach Marquess didn’t want us to think about those things. Our focus was on playing baseball and doing the things we always do and keep focused. It was special for me to play for him during his last three seasons there and take away all of the things that I did and his track record speaks for itself.”
The Mets selected Brodey in the third round of the 2017 draft before joining the Brooklyn Cyclones, which contain multiple Stanford alumni, including Winaker, pitcher Chris Viall, and hitting coach Sean Ratliff. The familiarity helped Brodey adapt to playing professional baseball 3,000 miles from home in a passionate environment.
“It was special to know that Matt was coming here to Brooklyn as well,” Brodey said. “We are very familiar with each other from our time at Stanford, and it’s great to have the chance to play in this ballpark. I had the opportunity to talk to Chris right after I got drafted by the Mets and he told about the transition to pro ball and some of the things offered by the organization.”
Brodey made his Cyclones’ debut on June 28 and became a constant presence in the middle of the batting order to help boost the team’s offense with a mix of strong on-base skills and the ability to make consistent contact. In his first month as a pro, Brodey has a .266/.330/ .351 slash line and 33 total bases. On July 21, he hit a grand slam against the Connecticut Tigers for his first career home run and becomes more at ease in the batter’s box.
“He is one of our most patient hitters at the plate,” Cyclones’ manager Edgardo Alfonzo said. “When you have the talent to be patient, I think good things will come. I tell the other guys on the team to take a look at the way he hits and how he knows when to be aggressive and when to take pitches.”