Wieters underwent Tommy John surgery last season, and is working his way back from the surgery. He was cleared to start throwing from 150 feet on Monday. Wieters had previously been throwing from 120 feet. He said he's preparing as if he'll be ready for opening day.
Wieters hit .308/.339/.500 over 104 at-bats last year.
"I really don't think there's much of a question going in there," Flowers said. "I would definitely say it's my job to lose. Barring an injury, there's really no doubt I'll be the guy catching opening day."
Flowers avoided arbitration by agreeing to a one-year deal, worth $2.675 million for this season. The 28-year-old hit .241/.297/.396 with 15 homers and 50 RBI over 407 at-bats in 2014.
"At this point, there's no reason to move off of that," general manager Rick Hahn said. "Competition is good. It brings out the best in people. And if someone comes in and fights for that job and earns it, I'm sure we'll be flexible. But certainly, we view Tyler as the starter."
"If he's not ready by opening day, it's gonna be very, very close. We'll know more Feb. 15," Dombrowski said.
Cabrera underwent right ankle surgery to remove bone spurs and to repair a stress fracture in a bone at the top of his foot on Oct. 22. He was cleared to remove his walking boot earlier in January and is expected to be reexamined on Feb. 15, right before Detroit's first full-squad workouts.
"I'm feeling great," Avila said. "After the season, there were a few days of just kind of relaxing, recovering from the concussion. After that, I was cleared by the doctors on everything. I feel great and moving along as normal."
Avilla will enter spring training without any restrictions. Manager Brad Ausmus indicated in December that he could see a lighter workload behind the plate in 2015. Because of the injuries, Avilla is open to wearing a hockey-style catcher's mask this season.
"I tried it one time my very first spring training in a bullpen," Avila said. "I didn't give it much of a chance. I never really thought how much of a difference it would make as far as kind of withstanding those impacts from the ball. But you live and you learn."
Avilla struggled last season, hitting just .218/.327/.359 over 390 at-bats. He noted that he never considered hanging up his cleats after a rough 2014 campaign.
"Never," Avila said. "That's never even crossed my mind."
The 15 players were pitchers Jairo Asencio, Scott Carroll, Jesse Crain, Logan Kensing, Arcenio Leon, J.D. Martin, Brad Penny, Zach Phillips, Joe Savery, catchers George Kottaras and Geovany Soto, infielders Juan Diaz and Andy LaRoche, and outfielders Tony Campana and Michael Taylor.
Soto is a 10-year MLB veteran. He spent the 2014 season with Texas and Oakland, batting .250 with one home run, six doubles and 11 RBI in 24 games. Soto missed a good portion of the season due to knee and foot injuries.
“I think Wilin has the athletic ability to do this, and he certainly has the work ethic,” Bridich said.
In fact, Astros general manager Jeff Lunhow expects Gattis to occasionally play in left field, but to primarily play at first base and DH. Although, that doesn't bode well for playing time for Jon Singleton and Chris Carter.
“We don’t know what Gattis is going to look like in left field,” Luhnow said, per the Houston Chronicle. “If he’s good out there or adequate, I’m sure he’ll get some at-bats out there. Is he going to be our everyday left fielder? I can’t imagine that happening with the guys that we have, but we want to have that bat in the lineup.
“Guys that have options are going to have to prove to us that they belong in the big leagues. I don’t think it’s just Singleton. Like I said, we’ve got multiple options at every position on the diamond now. So, you know, players may not be playing their preferred position -- that puzzle will come together in spring training. We’re only guessing to try to figure it out right now.”
Chirinos has appeared in 126 MLB games, starting 110. He hit .239 with 13 home runs, 15 doubles and 40 RBI in 93 games for Texas in 2014.
The 31-year-old Corporan joins the Rangers after spending the last four seasons with the Astros. He is a career .226 hitter with 17 home runs, 21 doubles and 63 RBI in 199 games. Rangers assistant general manager Thad Levine said Corporan will be the backup catcher to Robinson Chirinos, per the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
The 19-year-old Bostick was a second-round draft pick in 2013. He is 9-7 with a 4.46 ERA and 1.35 WHIP in 35 career appearances (26 starts) in the minors. He played at Class A Hickory in 2014.
Germen was acquired in a trade with the Yankees on Tuesday. It is the third time this offseason he has been designated for assignment.