2/6 Non-roster invitees

Here are the 22 non-roster players invited to the Cubs’ Spring Training camp (in case you missed it). Pitchers/catchers report on Feb. 18, with a workout the next day. Position players report Feb. 23 and the first full squad workout will be Feb. 24 in Mesa, Ariz., at Fitch Park.

Pitchers: Esmailin Caridad, Marco Carrillo, Manuel Corpas, Jay Jackson, Rodrigo Lopez, Trey McNutt, Blake Parker, Dae-Eun Rhee, Trever Miller and Chris Rusin

Catchers: Michael Brenly, Jason Jaramillo and Blake Lalli

Infielders: Alfredo Amezaga, Edgar Gonzalez, Jonathan Mota, Bobby Scales and Matt Tolbert

Outfielders: Jim Adduci, Jae-Hoon Ha, Brett Jackson and Joe Mather

— Carrie Muskat 


Carrie, what’s the status of Wellington Castillo? Is he progressing enough to back up Soto
(which I thought he was capable of for the last two years compared to Hill) or even challenge Soto’s number one slot? I would love to see either Castillo leap frog the somewhat mediocre Soto or light a fire under Soto to get more out of him.
**Note**The omission of a Hendry bashing in this comment is intentional and in no way indicates a change in my postion, me moving on or the ability to entertain or inform.

I have the same question on Clevenger carrie… why these 3 when there are seemingly 2 better specs waiting in the wings…

Yes, Clevinger too should be able to give Soto a run!!!

To clarify, the three catchers listed above are non-roster invitees. Clevenger and Castillo are both on the 40-man, so they will be in camp and competing for the backup job. Castillo’s problem last season was staying healthy. He did not play in the Dominican this offseason to focus on conditioning. The team will have to decide whether it’s better to have him playing once a week as backup vs. playing every day in the Minors. Clevenger, converted from shortstop to catcher, needs to play every day.

Opiton C: How about Castillo or Clevinger outperforms Soto and plays everyday in the bigs? Then the only decision the team has to make is which team to trade Soto to. Gosh I hope I am not perceived as a Soto hater just because I would prefer to have someone better than him, just like like I am not a Byrd hater just because I prefer somebody better than him. Soto has proven he is not good enough to block advancing players even if those advancing players, (like Colvin) may not be lights out quite yet. And although Colvin missed with the Cubs I can’t help but think he was not properly tailored and to blocked by Fukodome was not acceptable. Quade should have put his money where his mouth was and benched Fukodome in his last year of a miserable contract and just let Colvin sink or swim THE ENTIRE YEAR. I liked Soto a lot better a few years ago but I don’t see much in him now and unlike Colvin I must admit the Cubs did give Soto his fair shot but does he have “it”??
And is Soto so good to retard the big league advancement of either Castillo or Clevinger? Especially for the 2012 “rebuilding” season?

Joey, what happened last year is over. Time to move on. I’ve been disappointed in Soto because he wasn’t able to build off his 2008 season. He looks in shape; let’s see if he can stay healthy. Clevenger has made huge leaps in the role but not sure if he’s ready for the bigs just yet. Castillo should push Soto this spring.

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Carrie, with all due respect, moving on should include the moving on from any non-productive players and having an open mind to replacing said players with better players, challenging for an incumbent’s position. Evidently it was time to move on from Colvin, time to move on from Marshall etc, etc. I’m just throwing Soto in the same lot as it may be time to move on from the status quo which is (was?) if a player has a contract and he’s a veteran your job is secure. We should move on from THAT and I believe Epstein has shown signs of doing just that and it may not be long before either Castillo or Clevinger becomes Soto’s “David DeJesus” and facillitates a trade ala Colvin. Soto may do very well next season during your “let’s see if he can stay healthy” year but I must wonder….have we not ALREADY been seeing if he can stay healthy and in shape? Was there no call for him to at least stay in shape from the moment he signed his first contract? Your mention of him being in shape clearly suggests that he at one time WASN’T IN SHAPE (and I agree). Inury, illness, aging and health issues aside as any player may be subject to those circumstances…even the lead gloved Soriano managed to stay in shape as his skills eroded and his legs aged, one can not argue that he at least put forth the effort to stay in shape. Let’s move on from seeing if players can stay in shape and instead let’s see if they can produce, perform and contribute to winning ballgames and also see if new players can play better and replace the complacent. I see Soto somewhat as I see a few other players, not good enough to keep if a good trade is available but not bad enough to lament having him on the team. In other words “good enough”. Which isn’t good enough anymore.

What I hope the message to the players is that they better produce because nothing is guaranteed. Epstein & Hoyer had no attachment to Colvin, Cashner, and Marshall and felt they were assets worth moving.

p.s. no offense taken

Excellent. I like the take on the “attachment” and believe the new regime should be able to part ways with anybody they see unfit or non-productive. Soto fits the no attachment description as well as Colvin, Cashner & Marshall….there is no attachment therefore I would not be surprised to see a short leash on Soto, kind of like one last opportunity to impress the more demanding GM as opposed to being just good enough. Hendry and Quade are gone which means Soto and the like are on notice whether said or unsaid. The one thing that is guaranteed is Soriano’s pay check, if he can’t contribute to winning games I am hoping Sveum has the nerve to pull the plug on him regardless of guaranteed money because along with the guarnateed money will come gurarnteed below average (if not worse) fielding and something tells me Sveum will be a far cry from the over his head Quade when it comes to accepting futility.

Is Pedro Feliciano a non-roster invitee? He recently signed a minor league deal with the team, or is not official yet? I saw him in a couple outings in the Puerto Rico Winter League and was very dominant against lefties!

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