The Milwaukee Brewers have 18 non-roster players at spring training this season. Some are prospects getting their first taste of the majors while others are veterans hoping for another chance. Here's a look at each of the 18 invitees to Milwaukee's camp.
USA TODAY SportsJoe Camporeale
LHP Andrew Barbosa
The 29-year-old was signed this offseason as a minor-league free agent after spending 2016 in the Mets' system, where he pitched at four levels, combining to post a 1.51 ERA and 0.907 WHIP. Despite his age, Barbosa has pitched exactly one game at the Triple-A level (last year, allowing one run in five innings) and has yet to get a taste of the majors. Milwaukee has a dearth of lefties in camp, so perhaps he could surprise. One potential complication: Barbosa will be pitching for Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic.
RHP Yhonathan Barrios
Acquired from Pittsburgh for Aramis Ramirez near the trade deadline in 2015, Barrios made a claim for a spot on the 2016 roster after a solid showing in Triple-A and 6 2/3 scoreless innings with the Brewers. But a shoulder injury kept him out all of last season and while he's back in 2017, Barrios isn't on the 40-man roster and is being restricted due to having shoulder surgery. It's nice he's in camp, but making the opening day roster seems quite unlikely. He's someone to keep an eye on throughout the year.
RHP Hiram Burgos
Burgos, Milwaukee's sixth-round pick in 2009, hasn't pitched in the majors since he made six starts for the Brewers in 2013. That year Burgos pitched for Puerto Rico in the World Baseball Classic. Guess what? This year he's pitching for Puerto Rico in the WBC. A good omen? Burgos has a 4.40 ERA and 1.48 WHIP last year at Triple-A Colorado Springs. While that isn't exactly a pitcher's paradise, Burgos was actually worse on the road (4.71 ERA, 1.56 WHIP). Maybe a good WBC can spur him to a bullpen role with the big club.
USA TODAY SportsBenny Sieu
RHP Joba Chamberlain
Once thought of as the future Yankees closer, Chamberlain has pitched for Detroit, Kansas City and Cleveland the past two years. In 2016 with the Indians, Chamberlain had a 2.25 ERA and 1.15 WHIP in 20 innings. But control has been an issue -- he also walked 5.0 per 9 and has a career rate of 3.7/9. When he's on, he's very good, but when he's not … well, you get things like a 4.93 ERA, 1.74 WHIP, 1.7 HR/9 and 5.6 BB/9 (2013 with the Yankees). Chamberlain has a spring to prove himself yet again - or at least show his potential (yet again).
USA TODAY SportsRick Osentoski
SS Ivan De Jesus Jr.
The son of the former longtime major-league shortstop spent the last two seasons in Cincinnati, playing in 180 games with 465 plate appearances, owning a slash line of .249/.311/.341. DeJesus, who will be in 30 in May, is a .298 career hitter in the minors and .242 in the majors. He has also played for the Dodgers and Red Sox. Versatility will be his calling card as DeJesus played second base, shortstop, third base, first base and left field with Cincinnati. There's value being a utility player.
USA TODAY SportsLance Iversen
RHP Paolo Espino
The 30-year-old Espino just can't get over the hump, having never advanced past Triple-A in Cleveland's and Washington's systems. In the last two years with the Nationals' affiliate in Syracuse, Espino has posted ERAs of 3.53 and 3.59. A control pitcher (lifetime 2.3 walks per 9), Espino seems ticketed for depth at Colorado Springs. But, then again, no one knew who Junior Guerra was last year, either.
C Rene Garcia
The Brewers re-signed Garcia after he split time between Biloxi and Colorado Springs in 2016. Milwaukee has a lot of catchers in camp and Garcia likely is fighting for a spot in the minors. He's known more for his defense (career 36 percent caught stealing rate) than his bat (.333 slugging percentage).
USA TODAY SportsKim Klement
RHP David Goforth
A seventh-round pick in 2011, Goforth was something of a find in 2015 when he had a 2.68 ERA at Triple-A Colorado Springs and a 4.01 ERA in 24 2/3 with Milwaukee. But he had a rough 2016, posting a 10.97 ERA in limited time with the Brewers and a 4.91 ERA with the Sky Sox and was designated for reassignment. But the Brewers brought him back on a minor-league deal and the bullpen is one area which is often in a state of flux and perhaps he can force his way onto the team, if not for opening day then somewhere along the line in 2017.
Jeff HanischJeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
C Dustin Houle
An eighth-round pick in 2011, Houle has exactly two games of experience above Single-A (both with Double-A Biloxi last season). The team needs catchers during spring training. Expect Houle to be on a lot of the road trips.
RHP Stephen Kohlscheen
A one-time 45th-round draft pick, Kohlscheen was signed by the Brewers organization right before the start of the 2016 season. He proceeded to have a nice year at Double-A Biloxi, posting a 2.72 ERA and 1.17 WHIP while striking out 67 batters in 49 2/3 innings (12.1 K/9), which likely helped him earn an invite to spring training. Kohlscheen is 28, but if he can do in the spring what he did for the Shuckers, there could be a spot awaiting him in Milwaukee's bullpen, either now or later.
USA TODAY SportsCasey Sapio
C Jacob Nottingham
Acquired from Oakland for Khris Davis last year, Nottingham had a slash line of .234/.295/.347 with 11 home runs for Double-A Biloxi. However, he was just 21 years old, which is young for that level. Don't expect Nottingham to break camp with Milwaukee, but certainly the Brewers will be looking for improvement in 2017 to see if Nottingham is indeed their catcher of the future.
USA TODAY SportsMark J. Rebilas
LHP Andy Oliver
The 29-year-old Oliver made seven starts for Detroit in 2010-11 and has pitched at Triple-A for the Tigers, Pirates, Rays and Orioles since. Oliver has had control issues his entire career -- 6.0 walks per nine innings including 5.9 per 9 at the Triple-A level -- but he also racks up strikeouts, recording at least 10 whiffs per nine innings and five of his last six stops. Milwaukee only has three lefties on the 40-man roster (Josh Hader, Tommy Milone and Brett Suter) and Barbosa and Oliver are the lone non-roster southpaws (and, as mentioned, Barbosa will be gone for a bit at the WBC). So there is a path for Oliver to make it into Milwaukee's pen.
USA TODAY SportsKim Klement
OF Corey Ray
Before you get too excited that Milwaukee's first-round pick from 2016 is in camp, Ray is expected to be seen and not heard (from). The outfielder is coming back from offseason meniscus surgery and will be mainly an observer in his first spring training. Still, this is an indication that the Brewers wouldn't mind putting Ray on the fast track. He hit .247/.307/.385 in 57 games at Brevard Country after being drafted.
2B Eric Sogard
A left-handed hitting infielder, Sogard could challenge Scooter Gennett for a utility role. Sogard played 435 games with Oakland from 2010-15, starting 274 games at second base. He missed all of 2016 due to shoulder and knee injuries. Sogard owns a career slash line of .239/295/.313 with 29 stolen bases. According to advanced metrics, Sogard is an above-average defender at both second ad third.
USA TODAY SportsMatt Kartozian
RHP Forrest Snow
Who wouldn't want to see a guy named Forrest Snow pitch in Wisconsin, am I right? Snow was signed in the offseason by the Brewers after spending his career in Seattle's organization. Snow split time between the rotation and bullpen in his time in the Mariners' minor leagues. In 2016, he made appeared in four games for Triple-A Tacoma, with three starts (16 innings, 14 hits. 7 runs, 6 walks, 13 strikeouts). He also was used exclusively out of the pen with Double-A Jackson, recording a 2.37 ERA and 1.00 WHIP while striking 11.9 per nine innings. Snow has pitched in 90 Triple-A games over his career with a 4.84 ERA, 1.395 WHIP and 8.3 K/9.
USA TODAY SportsMark J. Rebilas
RHP Ryan Webb
Webb has had a solid major-league career, owning a 3.43 ERA and 1.34 WHIP in eight seasons, from 2009-16. Webb's best years came in 2013-15 with the Marlins (2.91, 1.21), Orioles (3.83, 1.26) and Indians (3.20, 1.15). However, with the Rays last season he had a 5.19 ERA and 1.73 WHIP in 17 1/3 innings.
USA TODAY SportsBrad Rempel
RHP Aaron Wilkerson
Wilkerson, who turns 28 in May, was acquired from the Red Sox in last year's Aaron Hill trade. While he had pitched well in Boston's system, he got lit up at Triple-A Colorado Springs to the tune of a 6.42 ERA and 1.52 WHIP in 11 starts. Nevertheless, he still struck out 9.4 batters per nine innings with the Sky Sox. While he's been a starter for most of his minor-league career, which includes two seasons of Independent ball, his best hope here is the bullpen.