Trade sends Twins out of Meetings on high note
Club fills need for pitching by acquiring Worley, May before leaving Nashville
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- After a quiet start to the Winter Meetings, the Twins made a big splash on the final day on Thursday, as they traded center fielder Ben Revere to the Phillies for pitchers Vance Worley and Trevor May.
It was the club's only big move in their four days at the Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center but helped them fill a big need by adding much-needed starting pitching to the organization.
Worley, who has a career 3.50 ERA with 238 strikeouts and 97 walks in 277 2/3 big league innings, figures to plug right into the rotation along with left-hander Scott Diamond.
And May, who has a career 3.92 ERA with 647 strikeouts and 276 walks in 525 1/3 innings in the Minors, is considered one of the top pitching prospects in baseball, and was ranked as Philadelphia's No. 2 overall prospect, according to MLB.com.
May gives the Twins another potential impact arm along with Alex Meyer, who was acquired a week ago in the trade that sent Denard Span to the Nationals. Meyer is No. 3 among the Twins' top prospects.
The Twins, though, aren't done acquiring pitching this offseason, as only Worley and Diamond are considered locks for the rotation.
They've still been linked to several free-agent starting pitchers such as Brett Myers, Kevin Correia, John Lannan, Brandon McCarthy, Ryan Dempster and Mike Pelfrey
So it'll continue to be an interesting offseason for the Twins, who are looking to add rotation depth and build for the future.
"It takes a lot of different areas to explore and we've explored them, so now it's just a matter of the finality of a couple of the pitchers available who have interest in us," Twins general manager Terry Ryan said. "It's not science here. Anything that would allow us to bring a guy in, we've explored.
"The only way we were going to get pitching was to make a little bit of a drastic move, whether or not you want to say it's drastic. It is a risk. I understand that. But to get pitching, you're going to have to do something. You can say the same thing about the trade for Denard."
Deals done: In a surprise trade after dealing Span to the Nationals last week, the Twins shipped Revere to the Phillies for Worley and May. The Twins feel they still have depth in center field with Darin Mastroianni set to take over in the short term with prospects Aaron Hicks and Joe Benson waiting in the wings. They also signed pitcher Jason Lane to a Minor League deal on Thursday.
Rule 5 Draft activity: The Twins added a potential bullpen arm, selecting right-hander Ryan Pressly from the Red Sox organization. Pressly, who turns 24 on Dec. 15, posted a 2.93 ERA in 27 2/3 innings at Double-A Portland after being converted to a reliever last season. They also selected third baseman Mark Sobolewski, 25, from the Blue Jays organization and lost right-handed pitcher Tom Boleska to the Orioles organization in the Triple-A phase of the Rule 5 Draft.
Goals accomplished: The Twins acquired both a pitcher who can help them now in Worley and one who can help them in the future in May. They also met with agents for several free-agent starters and have offers on the table for pitchers such as Francisco Liriano and Joe Saunders.
Unfinished business: With only Diamond and Worley guaranteed spots in the rotation, the Twins are still on the lookout for starting pitching. They also could decide to trade more assets such as Justin Morneau or Josh Willingham for pitching, as it appears they're trying to build for the future after finishing with the worst record in the American League the last two seasons.
Team's bottom line: "I'm not too worried about Dec. 6 or whatever today is. I'm more concerned about where we are in February when we report for Spring Training. We've worked this thing pretty good and know where we're headed once we get back. We know where we're at." -- Ryan.