Twins Insider: If results don't change the roster will

  • Article by: PHIL MILLER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 23, 2013 - 7:25 AM

The Twins’ losing streak grew to eight, and the loss carried consequences: Vance Worley was quickly demoted to Rochester.

– The Twins went 33 consecutive days utilizing the same 25-man roster this season, a stretch of stability that’s as rare in modern Major League Baseball as a triple play.

Sticking with the status quo was easy when the Twins were outpacing expectations, when they were winning series despite some iffy starting pitching and an offense frozen by cold weather, when they were sitting with a winning record (18-17) only 10 days ago.

But things have changed, and the team’s response to Wednesday’s 8-3 drubbing by the Braves was the most vivid example yet. Vance Worley, acquired from Philadelphia in the offseason and installed as a pillar of the starting rotation, was demoted only minutes after the final out, given a plane ticket to Class AAA Rochester and instructions to fix what’s wrong.

“We’re just searching for the guy we got in a trade,” manager Ron Gardenhire said of the righthander, who allowed eight runs over 3 ⅔ innings, ballooning his ERA to 7.21. “He’s got the stuff — now he’s got to put it out on the field.”

Worley was the second member of the Twins’ rotation to get that ultimatum during Atlanta’s three-game sweep at Turner Field; Pedro Hernandez was sent out on Monday after his own subpar performance a day earlier. And that’s a strong sign that the Twins, slogging through an eight-game losing streak that has dropped them into the basement of the AL Central for a third consecutive season, are ready to make changes in hopes of changing their results.

Samuel Deduno will take Hernandez’s spot on Friday, in hopes he can harness his electric fastball, and the Twins now must find a replacement for Worley on Monday in Milwaukee. They need to determine whether to keep their current eight-man bullpen, necessary at the moment because their starters have failed to complete five innings in six of the past seven games.

And might there be a bigger shakeup ahead? Second baseman Brian Dozier is batting .206 and right fielder Chris Parmelee is at .198; both have lost playing time lately as Gardenhire has tried to reignite his team’s fits-and-starts offense. Center fielder Aaron Hicks, despite his first career three-hit day and his first home run from the left side, is batting .157 and has begun striking out more often. Rookie outfielder Oswaldo Arcia was in an 0-for-15 slump before hitting a pinch-hit home run Wednesday.

Figuring out the position players, however, including how to fill Trevor Plouffe’s spot while he recovers from a concussion, “is the least of my concerns right now,” Gardenhire said. “Our pitching staff is more of a concern than anything else.”

As it should be. The starters’ combined ERA is 5.69, and opposing batters are hitting .333 against them. They’ve struck out only 57 hitters in 43 games, allowed 32 home runs, and made some odd choices — such as Worley’s down-the-middle fastball to Evan Gattis with a 3-0 count and the bases loaded in the fourth inning.

“I didn’t think he’d have the green light, personally,” Worley said, even though Gattis — “a monster, a strong young man,” Gardenhire called him — had two home runs in his past four at-bats.

The slugging catcher crushed Worley’s pitch to the opposite field, a grand slam that put the Twins in an 8-0 hole, secured Atlanta’s sweep — and the pitcher’s ticket to Rochester.

“They haven’t seen what I’m capable of doing. Ever since I got here, it’s been a battle, and I’ve just got to figure it out,” Worley said.

“[Worley] can put people away. Just too many mistakes over the middle, [and they] end up in the seats,” Gardenhire said. “You can say we’ve been patient, but we need performances here.”

In other words: This move isn’t likely to be the last.


Phil Miller •


  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


Buffalo 12:00 PM
New England
Cleveland 12:00 PM
Dallas 12:00 PM
Indianapolis 12:00 PM
Jacksonville 12:00 PM
San Diego 12:00 PM
Kansas City
NY Jets 12:00 PM
Chicago 12:00 PM
Philadelphia 12:00 PM
NY Giants
New Orleans 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Carolina 3:25 PM
Detroit 3:25 PM
Green Bay
Oakland 3:25 PM
Arizona 3:25 PM
San Francisco
St. Louis 3:25 PM
Cincinnati 7:30 PM
TBA 1/3/15 2:00 AM
TBA 1/3/15 2:00 AM
Toronto 110 FINAL
LA Clippers 98
Boston 88 FINAL
Washington 101
Orlando 102 FINAL
Charlotte 94
Memphis 103 FINAL
Miami 95
Indiana 110 FINAL
Brooklyn 85
New Orleans 100 FINAL
Chicago 107
Atlanta 90 FINAL
Milwaukee 85
Philadelphia 71 FINAL
Utah 88
New York 129 FINAL
Sacramento 135
Minnesota 97 FINAL
Golden State 110
NY Islanders 3 FINAL(SO)
Buffalo 4
Detroit 3 FINAL(OT)
Ottawa 2
Carolina 1 FINAL
Tampa Bay 2
New Jersey 1 FINAL
NY Rangers 3
Boston 2 FINAL
Columbus 6
Winnipeg 4 FINAL(OT)
Minnesota 3
Washington 3 FINAL
Pittsburgh 0
Dallas 4 FINAL
St. Louis 3
Philadelphia 1 FINAL
Nashville 4
Anaheim 1 FINAL(SO)
Arizona 2
Chicago 5 FINAL
Colorado 2
Edmonton 1 FINAL
Calgary 4
San Jose 1 FINAL
Los Angeles 3
Indiana 87 FINAL
Georgetown 91
Maine 43 FINAL
Seton Hall 72
UNC-Wilmington 82 FINAL
Minnesota 108
Georgia State 61 FINAL
Green Bay 78
Jacksonville St 61 FINAL
Jacksonville 75
Kentucky 58 FINAL
Louisville 50
Northern Ky 55 FINAL
Northwestern 76
North Carolina 89
Pepperdine 53
Santa Clara 60 FINAL
St Marys-CA 73
Oakland 56 FINAL
Maryland 72
Gonzaga 87 FINAL
BYU 80
Mercer 77 FINAL
Georgia 86
San Francisco 77 FINAL
Pacific 71
Wright State 55 FINAL
Ohio State 100
Presbyterian 65 FINAL
Virginia Tech 87
Brescia 42 FINAL
Western Ky 89
Tennessee St 46 FINAL
Tennessee 67
Kennesaw St 45 FINAL
Illinois 93
Colorado State 58 FINAL
New Mexico St 57
Portland 61 FINAL
San Diego 58
Wayland Baptist 63 FINAL
Utah State 75
Bristol University 59 FINAL
Weber State 109
Sacramento St 74 FINAL
Utah Valley U 49
Southern Utah 45 FINAL
SD Christian 50 FINAL
San Diego St 72
Illinois 18 FINAL
Louisiana Tech 35
Rutgers 40 FINAL
North Carolina 21
NC State 34 FINAL
UCF 27
Cincinnati 17 FINAL
Virginia Tech 33
(15) Arizona State 36 FINAL
Duke 31
Miami-Florida 21 FINAL
So Carolina 24
Boston College 30 FINAL
Penn State 31
(25) Nebraska 42 FINAL
(24) USC 45
Texas A&M 12/29/14 1:00 PM
West Virginia
Oklahoma 12/29/14 4:30 PM
(18) Clemson
Arkansas 12/29/14 8:00 PM
Notre Dame 12/30/14 2:00 PM
(22) LSU
(13) Georgia 12/30/14 5:45 PM
(20) Louisville
Maryland 12/30/14 9:00 PM
(9) Ole Miss 12/31/14 11:30 AM
(6) TCU
(21) Boise State 12/31/14 3:00 PM
(12) Arizona
(8) Miss State 12/31/14 7:00 PM
(10) Georgia Tech
(19) Auburn 1/1/15 11:00 AM
(17) Wisconsin
(7) Michigan State 1/1/15 11:30 AM
(4) Baylor
(16) Missouri 1/1/15 12:00 PM
(2) Florida State 1/1/15 4:00 PM
(3) Oregon
(5) Ohio State 1/1/15 7:30 PM
(1) Alabama
Houston 1/2/15 11:00 AM
Iowa 1/2/15 2:20 PM
(11) Kansas State 1/2/15 5:45 PM
(14) UCLA
Washington 1/2/15 9:15 PM
Oklahoma State
East Carolina 1/3/15 11:00 AM
(2) Connecticut 96
Houston 50
Gonzaga 78
Pacific 92 FINAL
San Francisco 54
St Marys-CA 62 FINAL
Santa Clara 61
San Diego 87 FINAL
Portland 65
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters





question of the day

Poll: Do you like the Twins' offseason moves so far?

Weekly Question