The Minnesota Twins will have just 13 non-roster players at spring training this season -- in 2017 they brought in 22. Some are prospects getting their first taste of the majors while others are veterans hoping for another chance. Don't discount these guys -- among last year's non-roster spring training camp players, Craig Breslow and Chris Gimenez made the opening day roster, while Niko Goodrum, Drew Rucinski, Aaron Slegers, Nich Tepech and Alex Wimmers all were with the big club at some point during the season. Here's a look at each of this year's 13 invitees to Minnesota's camp.
Associated PressDavid Goldman
C Willians Astudillo
Minnesota has an opening for backup catcher with Chris Gimenez no longer in the organization. Astudillo comes over to the Twins after spending the last two seasons in Atlanta's minor-league system. Last season with Reno he hit .352/.370/.558 in 36 games. Astudillo has shown a propensity to hit all throughout his minor-league career -- he owns a slash line of .311/.350/.401 in 560 games -- but his defense and arm is more of a question mark. Still, the same could be said of Mitch Garver, another catcher vying to be Jason Castro's backup (although Garver is on the 40-man roster).
OF Nick Buss
Like Astudillo, Buss signed with the Twins organization this past offseason. The left-handed hitter has shown a propensity to hit in the minors, owning a career slash line of .294/.349/.440. Last season with Triple-A Reno he batted .348/.395/.541. However, in two brief stints with both of Los Angeles' MLB teams, he's hit just .180/.229/.300 in 44 games. Buss is a longshot in part due to his age -- he's 31 -- but he can play all three outfield positions and also has a little experience at first base.
2B Taylor Featherston
Stop us if you've heard this before, but Featherston is new to Minnesota's organization in 2018. The 28-year-old could vie for a spot on the Twins' roster as a utility player -- he has major-league experience at every infield position other than pitcher and catcher and has also played some outfield in the minors. Featherston has shown a modicum of power in the minors but he's struggled to hit in three stints in the majors with the Angels, Phillies and Rays, owning a slash line of .160/.221/.256 in 137 games.
USA TODAY SportsKim Klement
2B Nick Gordon
For the second straight year, Gordon gets an invite to major-league spring training camp. However, this time the 2014 No. 1 draft pick is coming off a season in which he finally played above Class A, batting .270/.341/.407 with nine home runs and 13 steals for Double-A Chattanooga. Gordon's place on Minnesota's roster isn't likely here yet, but with Brian Dozier in the final year of his contract, the 22-year-old might not be that far away from the majors.
RHP Myles Jaye
After being traded three times in his minor-league career, Jaye signed with Minnesota in the offseason. Jaye spent seven seasons in the systems of the Blue Jays, White Sox, Rangers and Tigers, compiling a 4.09 ERA and 1.38 WHIP in 165 games (161 starts). Jaye got a September recall with Detroit last season, appearing in five games and posting a 12.08 ERA -- although he did pitch a scoreless 5 2/3 innings over his first two MLB appearances.
USA TODAY SportsRaj Mehta
RHP Michael Kohn
Kohn gets a major-league invite despite pitching in only 13 innings last season after being signed by the Twins in late July. After missing all of the 2016 season following shoulder surgery, he allowed just eight hits and two runs with 18 strikeouts while p itching for three teams in Minnesota's system. Kohn, who will be 32 in June, pitched in 132 games from 2010-15 with the Angels and Braves, recording a 3.52 ERA.
USA TODAY SportsDale Zanine
OF Ryan LaMarre
A former second-round draft pick, LaMarre has had cups of coffee with Cincinnati, Boston and Oakland in each of the last three seasons, notching just two hits in 37 at-bats. The 29-year-old right-hander batted a combined .247/.327/.341 for Salt Lake City and Nashville in 2017 after hitting .303/.369/.445 with 17 steals in 86 games for Triple-A Pawtucket in 2016.
C Brian Navarreto
Minnesota' sixth-round draft choice in 2013 is the prototypical good-field, no-hit backstop. Navarreto is just a career .209 hitter in the minors, but he's thrown out an incredible 50 percent of attempted basestealers. In 2017, Navarreto, who just turned 23, played in 65 games for Class A Fort Myers and in 29 games for Double-A Chattanooga.
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SS Gregorio Petit
The Twins brought a lot of veteran players in camp and none more so than Petit, who just turned 33. Petit made his major-league debut 10 years ago, in 2008 with Oakland. He's appeared in 171 MLB games since, with the A's, Astros, Yankees and Angels, compiling a career slash line of .249/.291/.353 while playing second base, third base, shortstop and outfield. Petit played last season at Triple-A Buffalo, where he batted .260/.283/.377.
USA TODAY SportsKim Klement
RHP Jake Reed
A fifth-round pick of Minnesota in 2014, Reed owns a career 3.21 ERA and 1.14 WHIP in 141 minor-league games, all in relief. In 22 games for Triple-A Rochester last season he had a 2.05 ERA, .224 opponent batting average, 1.18 WHIP and 33 strikeouts in 38 innings.
1B Brock Stassi
The 28-year-old left-handed hitter got his first taste of the major leagues last season with Philadelphia, batting just .167/.278/.295 in 78 at-bats. Stassi has shown some power in the minors, hitting 15 home runs in Double-A in 2015 and 12 in 117 games in Triple-A in 2016. He can play outfield as well as first base.
OF LaMonte Wade
The ninth-round pick in 2015 has developed into one of Minnesota's better hitting prospects. In each of his first two pro seasons he had an on-base percentage of over .400 while last year he just missed at .397 at Double-A Chattanooga, where he batted .292 with a .408 slugging percentage. The left-hander's career minor-league slash line is .295/.404/.437. Wade likely will start in the minors in 2018, but a recall later in the year certainly isn't out of the question.
C Bobby Wilson
Wilson could be this year's Gimenez -- a veteran catcher who sticks around as Castro's backup. Wilson knows what it's like to be a No. 2 catcher, having played in the majors from 2008-12 and 2014-16 for the Angels, Diamondbacks, Rays (twice), Rangers (twice) and Tigers, never accumulating more than 251 plate appearances in a season. The 33-year-old owns a career MLB slash line of .214/.268/.319. Last season he played at Triple-A Oklahoma City, batting .243/.318/.428.