January 17, 2014 at 11:43 AM
The Red Sox announced eight players who will attend Major League Spring Training as non-roster invitees. The list includes three prospects currently ranked among the top 10 in the organization: catcher Blake Swihart, left-hander Henry Owens, and righty Matt Barnes. Each will be attending Major League camp for the first time, as will right-handers Noe Ramirez and Dalier Hinojosa, first baseman Travis Shaw, and utility man Heiker Meneses. Shortstop Deven Marrero, Boston's top pick in the 2012 draft, has been invited for a second straight year.
The most surprising player in the group is Meneses. While playing exclusively middle infield in 2013, Meneses hit for a modest .253/.312/.343 line while moving between Double-A Portland and Triple-A Pawtucket. However, the 22-year-old Venezuelan spent time this winter working out in the outfield and at catcher, and the team may be intrigued by his potential in a utility role. The other seven invitees were each in Boston this week taking part of the team's annual Rookie Developmental Program.
These eight join four players that were previously announced by the team: pitchers John Ely and Tommy Layne and infielders Mike McCoy and Brandon Snyder. The organization typically brings between 15 and 25 non-roster invitees, so it is expected that more additions to major league camp will be announced.
Photo Credit: Henry Owens by Kelly O'Connor