As spring training winds down—it's already concluded in Arizona and Los Angeles—baseball allows time for reflection before the regular season becomes a reality, pennant races heat up and fans forget all about the narratives of Cactus and Grapefruit League play.
Occasionally, though, spring training surprises and disappointments are precursors to tangible results when the games begin to count.
For example, Yasiel Puig was a surprise of the 2013 Cactus League slate. Months later, he became one of the biggest surprises of the baseball season, soaring into stardom, controversy and the national spotlight.
The fun part of this type of list: Meaning is in the mind of the beholder.
If you believe in a pleasant surprise, bet big on regular-season success. If disappointing results in exhibition games are meaningless, then players who've underperformed could still be on track for big results over the next six months.
With Opening Day ready to arrive, six narratives and performances stood out among the slew of names and numbers that spring training baseball provided for the last six weeks.
Here are the biggest surprises and disappointments of spring training 2014.