At the winter meetings, I picked up some Internets lingo from my younger and hipper competitor David Murphy, and I think I've found the right spot to try it out: FWIW, the Phillies announced the following seven players as non-roster invitees to spring training (bios provided by team):
* Chris Duffy, OF … Duffy, 29, began the 2009 season with the Milwaukee Brewers where he batted .125 with 3 RBI in 19 games (five starts). On May 26, he was outrighted to triple-A Nashville where he finished the season. For his career, Duffy has hit .262 with six home runs and 52 RBI over 212 major league games between Pittsburgh (2005-07) and Milwaukee (2009).
* Paul Hoover, C … Last season, Hoover, 33, batted .253 with one home run and 28 RBI in his 73 games with triple-A Lehigh Valley. Hoover, who started 60 games at catcher and 10 at first base, had his contract selected by the Phillies on September 3 and had three hits in four at-bats with the club, including a walk-off single in the season finale against Florida.
* Cody Ransom, INF … Ransom, 33, split the 2009 season between the New York Yankees and triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre. He began the year as the Yankees Opening Day third baseman, filling in for Alex Rodriguez as he recovered from hip surgery. With New York, Ransom batted .190 with 10 RBI in 31 games, including 18 starts at third base, two at shortstop and one each at first and second base. Ransom is a veteran of seven major league seasons between the San Francisco Giants (2001-04), Houston Astros (2007) and New York (2008-09).
* Andy Tracy, INF … An International League postseason All-Star in 2009, Tracy, 36, spent the entire season with Lehigh Valley. He led the league in walks (74), finished second in home runs (26) and RBI (96) and was fourth in runs scored (76). Tracy also appeared in nine games with the Phillies, where he made one start and hit .500 (4-8) as a pinch-hitter.
* DeWayne Wise, OF … Wise, 31, spent last season with the Chicago White Sox where he established career highs in games (84), at-bats (142) and doubles (8). He batted .268 in 44 games after the All-Star break in 2009 and was 4-for-9 as a pinch-hitter. Wise, who made a game-saving, over-the-wall catch in Mark Buehrle's perfect game in July, appeared in 35 games in center field (24 starts), 34 in left field (10 starts) and five in right field (two starts) for Chicago. A veteran of seven major league seasons, Wise has played for the Toronto Blue Jays (2000, 2002), Atlanta Braves (2004), Cincinnati Reds (2006-07) and White Sox (2008-09).
* Wilson Valdez, INF … Valdez, 32, split last season between the Cleveland Indians and New York Mets organizations. He began the year with triple-A Columbus but was traded to the Mets on May 27 and outrighted to triple-A Buffalo on June 25. Between both minor league stops, Valdez combined to hit .247 with 12 RBI in 77 games. With the Mets, he batted .256 (22-86) with 7 RBI in 41 games and appeared in 32 games at shortstop (23 starts). Valdez played for Gigantes del Cibao in the Dominican Winter League where he hit .265 with 7 RBI in 29 games.
* Bill White, LHP … White, 31, did not pitch professionally this past season. He last pitched in 2008 as a member of the Texas Rangers organization where he combined to go 4-1 with six saves and a 3.48 ERA in 51 relief appearances between triple-A Oklahoma and single-A Bakersfield. He appeared in eight games for Texas in 2008.
The team has made clear that Paul Bako was welcome to attend spring training on a non-roster basis, but his agent, Barry Meister, told me at the winter meetings that Bako would decline. The Brian Schneider signing ensured that Bako would not be a Phillie, and he wants a chance to compete for a big-league job. No word yet on Matt Stairs' plans.