Over the last week, the Dodgers invited 15 prospects, mostly from their Minor League system, to come and train in Los Angeles as part of the club's Winter Development Program. Top prospects that are on the verge of bursting onto the big-league scene were there, such as pitcher Zach Lee and outfielder Joc Pederson.
Some made their Major League debuts in 2013: Matt Magill, Jose Dominguez and Nick Buss, while others are already on the 40-man roster: Pedro Baez, Jarret Martin and Yimi Garcia. Other names include: Seth Rosin, Chris Reed, Ross Stripling, Miguel Rojas, Scott Schebler, Pratt Maynard and Chris O'Brien.
So why does it matter that the Dodgers invited a handful of guys to train for a week at Dodger Stadium? Well in 2013 the club saw six of the 11 invitees play in the regular season.
The program is not just a precursor to Spring Training. While a lot of action takes place on the field, there are also seminars discussing the daily life of a Major Leaguer on and off the field.
These are players that the team believes will make an impact in the future. It is an interesting look at what the Dodgers have to offer in terms of organizational depth.
Because of the way the Dodger roster is built it may be hard to see many of these players making an immediate impact. They are particularly deep in pitching, which brings up thoughts of whether prospects like Zach Lee, Chris Reed and Ross Stripling will spend extra time in the minors, or end up somewhere else eventually.
The team has many high-dollar, long-term commitments that clog up the roster, but we will surely see a handful of these prospects throughout the grueling 162-game season.