Spring training statistics should generally be ignored in evaluating players, especially during the first two weeks of games. The pitching talent can range from A-ball to the majors, and those on the mound can be working on specific pitches or might be throwing just one pitch to try to get command of it. Some hitters played winter ball and are ahead of the rest, while others just didn’t come into camp ready for competition like others. The most important part of spring training is for players to get into game shape, stay healthy, get their timing down and be ready to play up to their accustomed level of performance by the third week in March.
However, it’s normal for fans, media and even teams to be concerned when players are having poor springs. We have to evaluate each struggling player on a case-by-case basis. Are they healthy? Are mechanical changes working? Are players pressing? Is their stuff playing better than the results? Does a player just need more time to develop? Is a player just having a difficult time adjusting to his new team or country? Those are just some of the factors to consider as teams decide what players to worry about and what players to not worry about after poor early spring performances.
Here is a list of players to worry and not worry about after the early returns: