The Twins are second only to the Houston Astros for the worst team earned run average among starting pitchers in Major League Baseball (5.69), so it’s a sad state of affairs for any hurler who can’t crack that rotation – especially one that began the season as the staff ace.
Coming off of an injury-plagued 2012, things haven’t improved for 25-year-old Vance Worley since the Phillies shipped him to Minnesota in exchange for Ben Revere. As quickly as he ascended to Opening Day starter for his new club, he’s plummeted that much farther with the recent news of his demotion to Triple-A Rochester.
Following another rocky outing against the Braves on Wednesday, Worley’s record dropped to 1-5 with a 7.21 ERA through 10 starts this year. He’s surrendered the second-most hits (82) in the American League, behind only ex-teammate Joe Blanton (86) now with the Angels.
Other troubling numbers include a 1.99 WHIP and 4.62 K/9, both of which are way below Worley’s career averages. Via the St. Paul Pioneer Press:
"We're looking for performance here," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "We got him in a trade. We need performance. You've seen what's happened here in a row with our starters. We needed him to step up, and it didn't work out."
"This has been kind of a struggle the whole way," Gardenhire said. "He's never really gotten on a roll here. He had a good start last time, pretty decent, but really his starts have gone like this pretty much every time."
"He needs to go down and get going," Gardenhire said. "I think we're just searching for the guy that we got in the trade. He's got the stuff. Now he's got to put it out on the field."
Revere meanwhile has been swinging the bat a bit better of late, raising his average to .260 and on-base percentage to .302. We’re not going to describe the Phillies as the winners of this trade just yet, but at least the centerfielder is beginning to produce nearer to expectations.
That said, we hope the Vanimal hasn't hit a wall and is able to turn things around, eventually working his way back to the Majors. After watching him pitch over a full season in 2011 when he finished third in NL Rookie of the Year voting, it’s hard not to think maybe the bone chip that was affecting him and subsequent surgery that eventually ended his season early in ’12 isn’t still a factor here.
>> Minnesota Twins demote Opening Day starter Vance Worley [TwinCities.com]