Pittsburgh Pirates: Intriguing Non-Roster Invitees to Spring Training
First baseman/outfielder Matt Gorski
After being drafted in the second round of the 2019 MLB draft, Matt Gorski really struggled in the minor leagues. Due to this, Gorski really was not known for his offensive potential and power upside. That is until he hit 17 home runs during his 2021 season in High-A Greensboro. 2022 was his official breakout season in High-A after putting up a .294/.377/.754, hit 17 home runs, drove in 37 runs, and posted a 188 wRC+ and a .460 isolated slugging (ISO) in 146 plate appearances.
This success led to a promotion to Double-A Altoona where he posted a .277/.354/.489 slash line, hit 6 home runs, drove in 28, stole 10 bases, and had a 130wRC+ across 159 plate appearances, and he played one game in Triple-A Indianapolis. He was also pretty solid defensively in the outfield with great arm strength. The only downside with Gorski was his high strikeout rate at 29.6% in Altoona.
Somewhat surprisingly, Gorski was not selected in the Rule 5 Draft this offseason, and he now has the ability to compete for an outfield spot and get first base reps this season. Spring training will be a great way for Pirate fans to see the potential of Gorski.
The future of the Pittsburgh Pirates appears to be bright and spring training is a great way for fans, as well as the team's management and front office to see these players perform. If the majority of non-roster invites do not play well in spring training, they will still have an entire season in the minor leagues to figure things out. Even though top prospects Nick Gonzales, Henry Davis, and Quinn Priester are notable non-roster invites, the majority of Pirate fans have at least heard their names and they already have high expectations to be the future of the Pirates, so it wouldn't make sense to do another breakdown of these players.
Which Pirate players are you excited to watch this spring?