Today, the Chicago Cubs revealed their full slate of non-roster (i.e., guys not on the 40-man roster) invitations for Spring Training. Most of the folks receiving invitations were already known or suspected, but this is the official confirmation. And holy crap, Albert Almora is among those invited.
In total, there are 24 non-roster players invited to Spring Training:
Nine pitchers: right-handers Marcus Hatley, Kyle Hendricks, Carlos Pimentel, Armando Rivero and Brian Schlitter. Left-handers Tommy Hottovy, Eric Jokisch, Jonathan Sanchez and Tsuyoshi Wada.
Five infielders: Javier Baez, Kris Bryant, Ryan Roberts, Chris Valaika and Jeudy Valdez.
Seven outfielders: Albert Almora, Chris Coghlan, Aaron Cunningham, Ryan Kalish, Mitch Maier, Darnell McDonald and Casper Wells.
Three catchers: John Baker, Rafael Lopez and Eli Whiteside.
Obviously Almora is the biggest surprise of the group, but, consider last year: Javier Baez got an invite after tearing up Low-A as a teenager. Now, Almora gets his turn. Very cool.
If you want to see the prospects in big league camp, make sure you come to the early games. They tend not to last all that long before being sent to minor league camp to prepare for the minor league season, and to clear out some room for the guys actually trying to make the big league roster.
And, before you freak out: remember, everyone on the 40-man (Soler, Olt, etc.) will be there. These are just the guys not already on the 40-man.