‘Vanimal’ washes out of camp early
FORT MYERS, FLA. – Righthander Vance Worley, who posted a 13.50 ERA in spring training, was sent outright to Class AAA Rochester on Friday.
To be cut from camp, Worley has to clear waivers, which he did Friday. Every team 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.
“I told him the other day when I saw him in the bullpen, every pitch looks the same,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “I can’t tell the difference between his fastball, his slider and his curveball. They are all hard. And when you do that, guys are on that.”
Worley came to camp about 25 pounds lighter, and his pitches seemed to be more lively. After a couple of encouraging outings, Worley began to get hit hard. That includes his outing on Tuesday against Tampa Bay when he gave up six doubles.
And Worley might not just slide right into Rochester’s rotation, which could have top prospect Alex Meyer and other young arms. There’s a chance “Vanimal” could wind up in the bullpen, but that will have to be decided.
“It’s not so much the Rochester rotation as it is what we want to do with him right now,” assistant General Manager Rob Antony said. “Is his best chance of getting back here and helping us out of the bullpen or is it in the rotation? That’s something we will discuss.”
• Matt Guerrier, making his third appearance of spring, pitched a scoreless eighth inning Friday in a 9-1 loss to the Mets. “Velocity was good considering he hasn’t throw for a while coming off that injury,” Gardenhire said. “He doesn’t look a lot different to when we had him before. Not he just needs to pitch more.”
• Outfielder Jason Kubel beat out an infield hit, drew a walk and singled in three plate appearances. He’s 4-for-5 over this past two games.
• Shortstop Pedro Florimon was 0-for-3 with two strikeouts and a flyout to center during a minor league spring training game. Gardenhire went down to the minor league camp to watch Florimon, who was slowed by appendicitis early in camp and is trying to get his timing at the plate.
• Gardenhire also saw lefthander Caleb Thielbar throw two scoreless innings during a minor league spring training game. “The ball came out of his hand really good,” Gardenhire said.
• Righthander Jared Burton threw a scoreless ninth, walking one and striking out one. He said he threw a handful of sliders and most of them moved the way he wanted them to. Burton, who said he has three more appearances scheduled, feels his stuff is improving each time out.
Twins righthander Kevin Correia will start for the Twins on Saturday against the visiting Yankees. New York’s new $155 million righthander Masahiro Tanaka will take the mound for the Bronx Bombers. The Twins have issued press credentials for 65 members of the traveling media party.
LA VELLE E. NEAL III