Yesterday the Tigers announced this year’s crop of non roster invitees. These are the players who aren’t on the 40 man roster, but will participate – at least for awhile – in the big league camp. It’s usually a passel of catchers, used to spread out catching duties, and a bunch of journeyman arms who will provide some depth at the AAA level. Then throw in a couple of position players who just haven’t fit in other teams plans and a prospect or two and you have your NRI’s. It’s how the Tigers picked up Jamie Walker, Bobby Seay, Tim Byrdak, Chad Durbin, and Marcus Thames. But this year’s group of players has a different look.
The Tigers NRI’s are:
Max St. Pierre
Of the 14 players, 11 are prospects from within the organization (or organizational catchers). The only newcomers are Alexis Gomez, Don Kelly, and Fu-Te Ni. And even then Gomez and Kelly are former Tigers organizational fodder and Ni could be considered a prospect. Essentially the Tigers have spent nothing even on minor league free agents.
My hope was that the Tigers would have a handful of pitchers that – while not vital cogs – could contribute to bullpen depth. But it looks as if they think they have that in house already. It’s looking more and more like the Tigers have absolutely nothing left to spend and the team will be relying Zach Simons, Rudy Darrow, Casey Fien, Kyle Bloom, Ryan Perry, and Alfredo Figaro to join the incumbents. It’s not hopeless, but not encouraging either. And I further wonder if this was going to be the approach, why not include Green, Jacobson, Satterwhite, and Weinhardt?