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Philadelphia Phillies' Brandon Marsh says he's 100% as he begins rehab assignment in Reading

Philadelphia Phillies fans return from London series: "It was absolutely a home game"
Philadelphia Phillies fans return from London series: "It was absolutely a home game" 01:24

READING, Pa. -- The vibes in Reading were certainly affected by Brandon Marsh's presence. 

Catching footballs in right field from hitting coach Brock Stassi, Marsh was loosening things up before playing his first baseball game in 11 days. The Philadelphia Phillies starting left fielder is on a rehab assignment with Double-A Reading Fightin' Phils this weekend, batting second and being the designated hitter in the first of a few scheduled rehab starts.

"In the most humble way, I feel ready. I feel confident," Marsh said on Thursday a few hours prior to his first rehab start. "Whatever happens tonight, happens. Just looking to get through nine innings safely." 

Marsh was hitting some good balls in batting practice, even joking about how the jet stream in FirstEnergy Stadium flies out to right field. The home stadium in Reading is known for the ball flying out of the park. 

The plan is for Marsh to be the designated hitter and get four at-bats in his first rehab assignment. Marsh will also play Friday, but whether he plays the field or not is to be determined. 

Marsh is currently on the 10-day injured list with a right hamstring strain. The Phillies have been extra cautious regarding his injury, making sure Marsh was 100% before engaging in any baseball activities. 

"The hamstring lingers on and on if you don't really fix it the right way the first time," Marsh said. "We've been really cautious and just really careful with the movements and the agilities and stuff. Making sure I'm physically, mentally, spiritually ready to go. I feel like we've reached that point. 

"We're gonna test it out tonight and have some fun." 

Even though Marsh is just in the batter's box Thursday, he's not afraid to test the limits. Known for going hard out of the box, Marsh is letting things come to him.  

"You know, if I hit it soft I'm gonna run hard. If I hit it hard, I'll do what the game tells me to do," Marsh said. "First game in two weeks, it's gonna feel a little fit foreign, but I'm sure it will come back to me quick."

The key aspect for Marsh and the Phillies is he's 100% healthy, which the Phillies hope stays that way. 

"When I first started jogging and doing baseball activity, I was a little hesitant -- just like anyone would be. But now, no, I feel really confident. I feel 100% and, I'm very excited for tonight," Marsh said. 

The Phillies are 5-2 in Marsh's absence, building a 10-game lead in the National League East. Philadelphia has a 46-21 record and the .687 win percentage is the best in the NL. 

David Dahl has thrived in Marsh's absence, hitting .333 with a 1.200 OPS in 15 at-bats filling in for Marsh. The Phillies left fielder loves what Dahl and the players filling in have been doing to help the Phillies win games. 

"Dahl's killing it man, and we need that out of him," Marsh said. "That's a tribute to the organization and how we go about our work here. It translates up to the show."

"It shows the kind of organization that we have, and it's not just in the big leagues. When you have dudes like [Edmundo] Sosa, dudes like [Johan Rojas] when he even came up. [Kody] Clemens, Dahl. Dudes are just stepping up. It's a lot of fun when people go down and you still have dudes that -- if they aren't the exact same, can do more than what you can do."

How much is it hurting Marsh he's not on the Phillies road trip? Besides watching the new season of "Alone" in his free time, Marsh has been on lockdown watching his team win ball games.

Marsh also wanted to make it clear. He'll be back with the big club soon. 

"I've watched every pitch of every game," Marsh said. "It stings a little bit, but those are my guys out there. It's always fun watching those guys go compete. We just care for one another.

"I feel like I wanna be in the fight as much as possible, even when I'm not there."

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