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Kopech, Soto among 19 invited to Sox camp

Several top prospects set to open Spring Training with big league club
MLB.com @scottmerkin

CHICAGO -- People who want to get a look at the White Sox will have a perfect chance to do so at the team's upcoming big league Spring Training.

The team announced its 19 players receiving non-roster invites to Spring Training on Monday, with eight free agents agreeing to Minor League contracts and 11 others coming from within the organization. The internal invites were extended to right-handed pitchers Spencer Adams, Zack Burdi and Michael Kopech, left-handers Aaron Bummer, Brian Clark, Jace Fry and Matt Purke, catcher Zack Collins, infielders Nicky Delmonico and Danny Hayes and outfielder Courtney Hawkins.

CHICAGO -- People who want to get a look at the White Sox will have a perfect chance to do so at the team's upcoming big league Spring Training.

The team announced its 19 players receiving non-roster invites to Spring Training on Monday, with eight free agents agreeing to Minor League contracts and 11 others coming from within the organization. The internal invites were extended to right-handed pitchers Spencer Adams, Zack Burdi and Michael Kopech, left-handers Aaron Bummer, Brian Clark, Jace Fry and Matt Purke, catcher Zack Collins, infielders Nicky Delmonico and Danny Hayes and outfielder Courtney Hawkins.

"I'm kind of just here to trust the process and do whatever they tell me," said Collins during an interview at the recent White Sox hitters mini-camp at Camelback Ranch. "In reality, I'm just trying to make it to the big leagues and help the team out there. Whatever they think is best for me, that's what I'm going to do."

Video: Top Prospects: Zack Collins, C, White Sox

Collins stands as the White Sox No. 6 prospect per MLBPipeline.com. The hard-throwing Burdi, who could be the team's future closer, sits at No. 8, while Adams ranks No. 7. Kopech, acquired as part of the Chris Sale deal with Boston, tops the internal invitees at No. 3 in Chicago's system, and he was recently ranked No. 5 on MLBPipeline.com's list of the best right-handed pitching prospects. Hawkins (No. 20) and Clark (No. 22) round out the top prospects to garner non-roster invites.

Infielders Cody Asche and Everth Cabrera, left-handed pitchers David Holmberg and Cory Luebke, catcher Roberto Pena, right-handed pitcher Blake Smith, catcher Geovany Soto and right-hander Anthony Swarzak are the eight free agents who agreed to Minor League deals. Soto returns to the White Sox after appearing in 78 games with the team in 2015. He has a chance to make up the big league catching tandem with left-handed hitting Omar Narvaez.

Cabrera represented the Padres as a National League All-Star in 2013, after he swiped an NL-best 44 bases in '12. Asche appeared in 371 games with Philadelphia from 2013-16, launching 22 home runs combined from 2014-15. Swarzak made 26 relief appearances with the Yankees last year and appeared in 217 games (32 starts) over seven Major League seasons with Minnesota (2009, 2011-14), Cleveland ('15) and New York ('16).

Video: PIT@PHI: Asche plates Herrera with a deep double

Luebke, who has recovered from two Tommy John surgeries, made nine relief appearances with Pittsburgh in 2016. He appeared in 64 career games (25 starts) between San Diego (2010-12) and Pittsburgh ('16). Fry, who comes to big league camp from within the White Sox system, also has fought his way back from two Tommy John surgeries.

With Soto earning the non-roster invite, the White Sox have a chance for pitcher Giovani Soto throwing to catcher Geovany Soto in Arizona. White Sox pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training on Tuesday, Feb. 14, including physicals and a workout. Position players will report and undergo physicals on Saturday, Feb. 18, which will also be the first full-squad workout.

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Chicago White Sox, Cody Asche, Everth Cabrera, Michael Kopech, Geovany Soto