After Major League Baseball announced workout dates for every club on Tuesday, the Tigers finalized terms for minor league deals with 22 players. On Wednesday, the team released the names of the 22 non-roster players who had been invited to camp for spring training. Among the names listed were fireball minor league reliever Joe Jimenez and former Tiger Omar Infante.
Of note, there were no left-handed pitchers among those invited. Ten right-handed pitchers, three catchers, five infielders, and four outfielders were listed. A.J. Achter was one of the 10 pitchers, a reliever whom the Tigers signed on Dec. 9. Three other pitchers played a handful of games with the Tigers in the last two years.
Former Cardinals closer Edward Mujica is also listed and comes with 10 years of major league experience. However, he failed to make a major league roster with either the Phillies or Royals, remaining at the Triple-A level for the entire 2016 season. Catcher Grayson Greiner was also invited after having a breakout 2016 at the Single- and Double-A level.
The Tigers’ spring training invitees
With the instability in center field, it’s possible that a non-roster invitee surprises enough to make the team. That is, barring a late-offseason move by the Tigers to reinforce their weakest position. Right now, it’s all but open season for any outfielder to prove they can handle the job.
On the opposite of that, second base may be secure with Ian Kinsler at the helm, but Jose Iglesias and Nick Castellanos are entering 2017 having recovered from late-season injuries. It’s not a given that they’ll need kid gloves, but it won’t hurt to have a solid backup and Infante could provide that, in addition to Andrew Romine.