Willits: With a compact body and swing to match from both sides of the plate, Willits looks like a young Lenny Dykstra. His case is advanced by his .397 career on-base percentage in 414 Minor League games.Taken out of Oklahoma in the seventh round of the 2003 First-Year Player Draft, Willits hit .267 with a .411 on-base percentage in 28 games with the Angels last year. At Salt Lake, he batted .327 with a .448 on-base percentage, stealing 31 bases in 97 games. "Reggie's an on-base guy, a situational hitter," Scioscia said. "In center field, he has terrific range, like Murph. Reggie runs a little cleaner routes, but doesn't throw as well as Tommy. "Both are talented and on the depth chart. We'll see where they are next month." Murphy: Once a switch-hitting shortstop struggling to connect from the left side, he has become a quality center fielder with power from both sides of the plate. "He's got an explosive bat," Scioscia said. "Terrific power from both sides. We've seen him go from a shortstop with good upside to being a premium center fielder. Tommy's grown up on the experience end. He's become a baseball player."
A third-round pick in 2000 out of Florida Atlantic, Murphy, 27, hit .229 in 70 at-bats for the Angels last year, playing 48 games. He batted .302 at Salt Lake.A superb athlete with a powerful arm and good speed, Murphy's challenge is to improve his plate discipline in order to get in more hitters' counts. Gorneault: Rangy and powerful at 6-foot-3 and 220 pounds, Gorneault came to camp banging and hasn't stopped after a winter spent in the Dominican Republic honing his skills. A 19th-round pick in the 2001 First-Year Player Draft out of the University of Massachusetts, Gorneault has put together back-to-back productive seasons at Salt Lake. The Pacific Coast League RBI leader in 2005 with 108, along with 26 homers and a .293 average, Gorneault missed close to a month last year with an injured kneecap, finishing with a .283 average, 15 homers and 78 RBIs. "Nick can hit," Scioscia said. "He can drive the ball from the right side. We like his bat and his attitude." Gorneault is a corner outfielder, a terrific athlete who excelled in basketball in high school. Evans: Acquired last July from St. Louis in exchange for Jeff Weaver, Evans, 25, assembled some remarkable numbers last year with three clubs at two levels -- Palm Beach (Class A) and Double-A Springfield and Arkansas. He hit .309 combined at the three stops, with 33 homers, 87 RBIs and 37 steals. Taken by the Cardinals as a draft-and-follow in 2001 out of Middle Georgia Junior College, Evans has size (6-foot-4, 211 pounds) and can play all three positions with above-average skills. But it's his bat that lifts his profile. "He can hit," Scioscia said. "We really like his approach up there. He's a guy to keep an eye on."
A long shot in this group, Evans' future probably isn't now.Pride: A popular veteran who hit .222 in 22 games with the Angels last year, Pride keeps on ticking and ripping at age 38. "If we decide we need a left-handed bat," Scioscia said, "Curtis is available. We know what he can do." In a professional career that began in 1988, Pride has played for six Major League clubs, debuting in 1993 with Montreal. He's a .250 career hitter with 20 homers and 82 RBIs in 796 at-bats.
Lyle Spencer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.