The Padres announced the non-roster invites to Spring Training 2024. There are plenty of top prospects heading to big league camp.
On Friday, the Padres announced their non-roster invites to big league camp. Spring Training 2024 kicks off with pitchers and catchers reporting for their first workout on February 11 and several intriguing names will be donning the brown and gold at the Peoria Sports Complex.
We have extended Major League Spring Training invitations to 32 players.
— San Diego Padres (@Padres) January 26, 2024
The list of invitees is always an eclectic bunch. It usually consists of a combination of fringe minor leaguers, aging veterans on minor league deals, and a few young top prospects.
Fans headed to Peoria will certainly be looking forward to the latter.
Overall, the Padres invited four of the six prospects they have currently in MLB Pipeline’s Top 100.
Ethan Salas headlines the group at an astounding 17 years old. He appears to be on the fast-track to a big league debut long before he turns 20.
The teenage catcher jumped through three different levels of the farm system, eventually finishing with Double-A San Antonio. He batted .248 with a respectable .752 OPS and nine homers in those 66 games combined. He will get a chance to work behind the plate with the top pitchers in the Padres organization, which should be an invaluable experience.
Jackson Merrill rounds out the list of top position player prospects that will be in camp. This will be the third year in a row the 2021 first round pick will be in the big league camp. Last year, he impressed with a .286 average in 16 games in Arizona.
Two of San Diego’s top pitching prospects will be in camp.
Robby Snelling is currently San Diego’s top lefty pitching prospect and the No. 3 overall left-handed pitching prospect in baseball. He got all the way up to Double-A San Antonio last season, starting four games for the Missions with a 1.56 ERA. The burly ex-football player has put up good numbers wherever he has been. He will get a chance to test his stuff against big leaguers next month.
Drew Thorpe heads to big league camp from the right side of the mound. He enters his first season in the Padres organization after coming over from the Yankees in the Juan Soto megadeal. While Michael King appears to the centerpiece of the return package to the Padres so far, in due time, that honor may be Thorpe’s. He has a mean changeup which helped him post a 2.52 ERA in over 139 innings through two levels of the New York system last year.
He has the makeup of a middle or even top of the rotation arm after a bit more seasoning.
Also of note, the Padres invited several players with big league experience who will fight for an Opening Day roster nod.
Matt Festa, Drew Carlton, Daniel Camarena, and Ryan Carpenter all have logged innings on a major league mound. They are looking to carve out a role for themselves on the pitching staff for the 2024 Padres.
Overall, the exciting part is that the Padres will have 15 of their top 30 prospects in camp, including four of the top 100 in baseball.
1️⃣5️⃣ of the Padres top 30 prospects will be in big league camp for Spring Training
1. Ethan Salas
2. Jackson Merrill
3. Robby Snelling
6. Drew Thorpe
7. Jairo Iriarte*
8. Adam Mazur
12. Graham Pauley
13. Jakob Marsee
15. Randy Vásquez*
16. Eguy Rosario*
18. Ryan Bergert
— Al Scott (@AlScott1998) January 26, 2024
Native of Escondido, CA. Lived in San Diego area for 20 years. Padres fan since childhood (mid-90s). I have been writing since 2014. I currently live near Seattle, WA and am married to a Seattle sports girl. I wore #19 on my high school baseball team for Tony Gwynn. I am a stats and sports history nerd. I attended BYU on the Idaho campus. I also love Star Wars.