The SF Giants published their list of non-roster invitees to camp on Thursday. Many of the organization's top pitching prospects were among those to receive an invite including Hayden Birdsong, Reggie Crawford, Mason Black, Landen Roupp, Carson Seymour, and Carson Whisenhunt.
Many of SF Giants' top pitching prospects among those to be invited to spring training
They will be joined by the top pitching prospect in the organization, Kyle Harrison, who will also be in camp. There are not many surprises here given that the club plans on leveraging its pitching depth in 2024.
Getting them exposure to big league camp is a great way to get their feet wet. Perhaps, Black is the closest to a big league promotion given that he posted a 3.86 ERA in 13 starts with Triple-A last year.
However, Birdsong, Whisenhunt, Roupp, and Seymour may not be that far behind. Birdsong posted a 3.49 ERA with 149 strikeouts in 100.2 frames across three levels. While he may not be among the Giants' best prospects according to external outlets, I have a hunch that the Giants view him higher internally.
Whisenhunt has risen up the prospect rankings after posting a 2.45 ERA in 58.2 innings across three leagues in 2023. Roupp had a 1.74 ERA in 31 Double-A innings last before finishing the year on the injured list. Seymour had a 3.99 ERA in 28 outings with Richmond.
Perhaps, Crawford will be the name to watch in camp. He is arguably the furthest away from the majors, but he has some of the highest upside of any pitching prospect in baseball. The 23-year-old had Tommy John surgery in October of 2021 and the Giants have been cautious with his workload since picking him in the first round of the 2022 draft.
The hard-throwing lefty posted a 2.84 ERA in 19 innings last year. Plus, he saw occasional time in the batter's box during the season and worked exclusively as a position player in the Arizona Fall League. Crawford hits with a good amount of power but is still very raw at the plate. It feels like pitching will be his calling card.
The Giants will be inviting some intriguing players on minor league contracts such as Spencer Howard, Daulton Jeffries, and Thomas Szapucki. Outfield prospect Grant McCray headlines the group of position players being invited to camp. Though, the position player side feels a bit light at the moment. The Giants could still have a move or two up their sleeve or they could be relying on the 40-man roster for coverage.