Over the past few weeks, teams have been announcing which prospects will be non-roster invitees to Spring Training. Today we’ll go over three invitees that you should keep an eye on this spring.
Orioles catcher Adley Rutschman was the top pick in last year’s MLB Draft, and he’ll get a taste of Major League Spring Training this spring. While Rutschman is not a candidate to make the Orioles Opening Day roster, the former Oregon State catcher will get a chance to catch some of the Orioles’ Major League pitchers, as well as get a crack to go up against advanced pitching. He most likely won’t be in camp long, given he’s just months removed from playing in college, but this will be the first real opportunity that Orioles fans will get a chance to see their future franchise catcher. He won’t have an opportunity to beat out Chance Sisco or Austin Wynns for a spot on the Orioles, but Baltimore fans shouldn’t have to wait too much longer to see Rutschman.
We move from one former number one overall pick to another top pick. Minnesota SS Royce Lewis, the number one pick in the 2017 MLB Draft, will be a non-roster invitee for the Twins this spring. Lewis is an incredible athlete with elite speed, along with a quick bat and strong hitting ability. The California native’s loud tools have Twins fans salivating, but he still needs to some refinement and time in the Minors. Last season, Lewis spent time at two levels (A+ and AA), but didn’t exactly blow anyone away. Lewis in 2019 recorded a combined slash line of .236/.291/.371, and his K/AB went up last year as well (17.3% in 2018, 23.7% in 2019).
Despite the poor numbers in 2019, Lewis still has the tools to become an impact player in the Majors. And baseball fans will get a chance to see him in Twins camp this spring.
We’ve written about Dylan Carlson a few times over the past weeks, as he was one of our “Prospects to Watch” in the NL Central this season. While Rutschman and Lewis may not be contenders to start the season in the Majors, the former Cardinals first round pick certainly has a chance to crack the Redbirds’ Opening Day roster. Last season, Carlson recorded a .292/.372/.542 slash line across two levels (AA and AAA), and hit 26 home runs and 62 extra base hits. The 21-year old also stole 20 bases in 28 attempts in 2019.
With Marcell Ozuna heading to Atlanta, along with the trade that sent Jose Martinez and Randy Arozarena to Tampa Bay, the path to St. Louis has cleared up quite a bit over the past few months. If the 21-year old has a strong spring, he may be a Cardinal come Opening Day.
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