The Twins announced yesterday that RHP Vance Worley, who posted a 13.50 ERA in spring training, was sent outright to Class AAA Rochester on Friday. In order to send Worley to AAA Rochester, Worley has to clear waivers, which he did. That means that every team in baseball passed on Worley, who finished third in National League Rookie of the Year voting in 2011 with the Phillies and was last year’s Opening Day starter for the Twins. Was does that tell you about the 26 year-old Worley if no team in baseball is willing to take a chance on the guy that was 3rd in ROY voting just a couple of years earlier when pitchers are in such demand? Are the Twins wasting a AAA roster spot and possibly delaying some others pitchers development by having Worley there? If I was the Twins I would have the “Vanimal” on a very short and tight leash.
Twins GM Bill Smith traded outfielder Ben Revere to the Phillies in order to acquire Worley and minor league pitcher Trevor May in December 2012. The only saving grace from this trade is if May becomes a decent starting pitcher for Minnesota in the near future.
We were at Tuesday’s game when Worley had his last start this spring for the Twins and it was a pitiful performance as the Tampa Rays pounded the Twins to a tune of 11-3. Worley lasted just 2 and 2/3 innings and gave up 11 hits (including 6 doubles) and walked 2 while giving up 7 earned runs. If I remember correctly there was not a blooper in the bunch, the Rays were crushing the ball. As I said earlier, the Twins lost that game 11-3 and we left after 7 innings with the Twins trailing 8-1 and we hardly ever leave games early. The Twins had 8 hits and 9 walks in that game and could only muster 3 runs, that is some bad baseball. When we attended a rained out game against the Cardinals earlier this month we were able to send in our $10 parking ticket for a refund, I wonder if I should send in my parking ticket for this game to Dave St. Peter and see if I can get a refund because of the Twins poor play that night? Maybe I will.
The other day acting GM Rob Antony made some strong comments about outfielders Aaron Hicks and Alex Presley not stepping up this spring to earn the centerfield starting job and the lack of hitting by free agent signees Jason Kubel and Jason Bartlett. I applaud Mr. Antony for saying what is on his mind and being honest about the state of this ballclub and I wish more of the Twins organization were as honest. I really expected this team to play close to .500 ball this year (and I still think they can) but based on what I have seen todate the team and its fans could be in for a long season. We all know that spring training means next to nothing as far as team regular season wins are concerned but the Twins play does send a message to Twins fans on what they should expect this season. Spring training is winding down and has about a week to go, the Twins had better start playing some better baseball soon if they want to see fans butts in the Target field seats this year.
The team started off spring training full of optimism in spite of GM Terry Ryan’s cancer diagnosis but the Miguel Sano injury seemed to drain the life right out of this team and its staff. Now is the time for manager Ron Gardenhire to step up and show his stuff by playing what he thinks is his best line-up and getting this team ready for some real baseball. The Twins strategy should be simple, the best players get the jobs and if they don’t cut the mustard then it should be “next man up” until this team starts to show some life and energy. Twins fans deserve to watch a team that wants to play and to win!