4 Phillies non-roster invitees poised for Opening Day roster
By Matt Rappa
4 Phillies non-roster invitees who could make team out of spring training.
Spring training has arrived, with Wednesday marking the first workout for Philadelphia Phillies pitchers and catchers down in Clearwater, Florida.
Another sign that the baseball season is upon us is the official announcement of all 32 non-roster invitees the team will bring to camp. Thirteen non-roster players were invited to major-league spring training, including seven pitchers, three catchers, two outfielders and one infielder.
Nineteen other non-roster players — including outfielder Odubel Herrera — were also invited to spring training mini-camp, which is essentially the traditional minor-league camp that has yet to gain traction for a return.
Looking at just the first 13 minor-leaguers invited, here are four that are most likely to crack the big-league roster come Opening Day on April 1.
1. Brandon Kintzler
We all heard of the crazy backstory on how Bryce Harper convinced 11-year veteran right-hander Brandon Kintzler to walk away from a guaranteed deal with the Miami Marlins to sign with the Phillies.
Kinztler rolled the dice, took his former Washington Nationals teammate’s advice, and signed with Philadelphia. Expect him to live up to potential and surprise across the 28-game Grapefruit league schedule.
This past season with the Marlins, helping them to a postseason berth, Kintzler posted a 2.22 ERA, 1.315 WHIP, and 12 saves out of 14 opportunities spanning 24 appearances and 24 1/3 innings. In the postseason, Kintzler tossed three scoreless innings while striking out five of his 12 batters faced.
The Phillies added Archie Bradley to be a lockdown, late-inning reliever, but Kintzler seems poised to similarly contribute as part of a new-look bullpen.