MIAMI -- Outfielder JJ Bleday and right-hander Max Meyer -- the Marlins' top MLB Draft selections in 2019 and '20, respectively -- were among 18 non-roster invites to Spring Training, the club announced on Monday. Nine are on the organization's top 30 prospects list, per MLB Pipeline, and 11 are players drafted by Miami who are receiving their first spring invitations.
Bleday, chosen fourth overall in the 2019 MLB Draft and ranked as the club's No. 2 prospect, was part of Miami's 60-man player pool last season. He appeared in nine games before COVID-19 shut down Spring Training, going 3-for-13 in his first taste of big league camp. The 23-year-old Bleday is projected to make his MLB debut sometime in '21, and right field is expected to be an open competition for the Marlins.
Meyer, 21, was also a member of the 60-man player pool after being selected third overall in the 2020 Draft. Without any professional baseball experience, it's unlikely Miami's third-ranked prospect will debut in '21. Righties Kyle Nicolas (No. 21 prospect) and Zach McCambley (No. 22), who were chosen in the second and third rounds, respectively, will also be there when pitchers and catchers report to Jupiter, Fla. Each of those pitchers were drafted out of college in '20.
Behind the dish, Jorge Alfaro and Chad Wallach are the only backstops on the 40-man roster, though veteran Sandy León previously received a non-roster invitation to big league camp. Joining them will be Will Banfield, the club's No. 30 ranked prospect -- and the only catcher in Miami's Top 30 rankings. Taken in the second round of the 2018 Draft, Banfield appeared in 101 games with Class A Clinton in '19 and he was part of last year's 60-man player pool.
Other members of the 2019 Draft class set for their first taste of MLB Spring Training include outfielders Kameron Misner (No. 35 overall pick) and Peyton Burdick (third round), as well as infielder Nasim Nunez (second round), who is just 20 years old and last played at Class A Short-Season in '19.
Outfielder Connor Scott, the Marlins' first-round pick (13th overall) in the 2018 Draft, also received his first invitation. Part of the 60-man player pool last year, he split time between Class A Clinton and Class A Advanced Jupiter in '19. Scott, 21, had been facing competition more than two years older than him at the time.
Other players to receive a Spring Training invite this time around include right-handers Tommy Eveld and Josh Roberson; left-handers Jake Fishman, Dylan Lee and Will Stewart; catcher Nick Fortes; infielders Joe Dunand and Luis Marte; and outfielder Brian Miller.
This isn't the first round of 2021 Spring Training invitations. In early January, the Marlins announced Minor League deals with invites to big league camp for infielder Eddy Alvarez, catcher Brian Navarreto and right-handers Anthony Bender, Alexander Guillen, Luis Madero and Zach Thompson, as well as León.