Pirates Trade For Vance Worley

According to a press release from the Pittsburgh Pirates, they have acquired pitcher Vance Worley from the Minnesota Twins for cash. Worley has pitched four years in the majors, beginning his career with the Philadelphia Phillies, before moving on to the Twins last year. The 26-year-old righty had a 7.21 ERA in ten starts in 2013, allowing 82 hits in 48.2 innings. He has been hit around in Spring, posting a 13.50 ERA and allowing 22 hits in 10.2 innings.

Worley was outrighted off the Twins roster on Friday and assigned to AAA, so no other roster moves need to be made.

John Dreker

Author: John Dreker

John was born in Kearny, NJ, hometown of the 2B for the Pirates 1909 World Championship team, Dots Miller. In fact they have some of the same relatives in common, so it was only natural for him to become a lifelong Pirates fan. Before joining Pirates Prospects in July 2010, John had written numerous articles on the history of baseball while also releasing his own book and co-authoring another on the history of the game. He writes a weekly article on Pirates history for the site, has already interviewed many of the current minor leaguers with many more on the way and follows the foreign minor league teams very closely for the site. John also provides in person game reports of the West Virginia Power and Altoona Curve.

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  • Nate James

    LOVE THIS! Sorta…. feel like they can turn him around. Low risk, high upside!

    • meatygettingsaucy

      The best part is, he’s only 26. Plenty of time to develop and could easily bounce back into a No. 4 starter

  • SportOMania

    To get a 26 year old pitcher who once succeeded for just cash is a no-brainer. Although this makes me almost sure a starting pitcher is about to be dealt. Indianapolis’ rotation was already crowded. Unless of course they are about to admit to a mistake and eat 5 million.

    • John Dreker

      They did have a starting spot for Jameson Taillon and he won’t be around for about a month, so Worley might just be taking his spot for now

  • Honusty

    It’s not like they guaranteed him $5 million and a roster spot or anything

    • Nate James

      I will wait to say it is a mistake until the season started. We should see!

      • meatygettingsaucy

        But he got racked in a spring training start where the focus is working on things, not results. We MUST release him

  • Joe Sweetnich

    When he was with the Phillies all their fans called him “Vanimal”.

  • Leefoo Rug Bug

    Looks like AAA depth?

  • lonleylibertarian

    More bottom feeding – great way to say thanks to the fans for their support

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/vance-worley-and-losing-the-magic/

    • leowalter

      It takes a lot of pitching at the AAA level also lonely. Bottom feeding has nothing to do with it I would think.

    • Nate James

      Bottom feeding… Just like when we got AJ or when we got Liriano. HOW DARE THE PIRATES ORGANIZATION THINK THEY CAN CHANGE A PITCHER THAT HAD SUCCESS IN THE PAST! Saying thanks to the fans is doing exactly what they did last year and that is by making smart decisions to help them win. Worley has had success in the past and if any team can correct it, its the buccos. I like the move for the depth and the possibility that we might get a good pitcher out of it. Love when someone posts an article from last year and make it seem like its the worst possible move EVER!

      • lonleylibertarian

        That was last year. Get over it – if you want to play with the big boys you don’t do it by sitting on your hands all winter.

        Guess where the payroll ranks…

        I am not an advocate of throwing money away – in fact if I was in Nutting’s shoes I would be doing exactly what he is doing – putting every spare dime on the bottom line and thanking the suckers that are Pirate fans for making me very happy.

        But what goes around sometimes comes around. The Brewers are a bit better – the Cards are at least as good – and there is a real chance [because of the FO sitting on it’s hands all off-season] that we find ourselves waking up on Labor Day in 5th Place.

        If that should happen I don’t want to hear DK or any of the other paid sycophants wine about the lack of support from Pittsburgh fans – you reap what you sow…

        • http://www.stealingfirstbase.com Stealing First Base

          This is the same thing we see from Pittsburgh fans every offseason for every team.

          “The Penguins got rid of Jordan Staal, they’re done being competitive!”

          “The Steelers cut Antwaan Randle-El, they’re screwed now!”

          The Pirates won 95 games last season, have two of their best prospects set to come up this season, and you’re over here all “THE SKY IS FALLING! THE SKY IS FALLING!”

          • lonleylibertarian

            If I recall correctly Staal wanted to play with his brother and could not come to terms

            “On July 1, 2012, Jordan signed a 10 year, $60 million extension with the Carolina Hurricanes. He had received exactly the same offer from the Pittsburgh Penguins but declined it.”

            I was never a huge Randle-El fan – and was very happy he got rich off of the Redskins – no way he gets anything
            like that money from the Steelers…

            The Pirates won 94 regulars season games – 95 would have avoided the play-in game and had Liriano for two playoff starts – a big difference.

            The sky is not falling – but this is almost embarrassing…

            1. Cards – $108M
            2. Reds – $106M
            3. Brewers – $100M
            4. Cubs – $89M
            5. Bucs – $72M

            Arguably the Brewers and Reds are as small or smaller markets than Pittsburgh.

            I do not think FA is the only way you build a team…

            1. Jose Abreau is projected at 3+ WAR – he cost $68M for 6 Years – but brings the Sox into the top 10 of 1st bas projections.
            2. QO to Burnett – I have said a lot about how stupid not QOing AJ was – and stand by it.
            3. Dangling a closer in the off season to try and find a better 1st base alternative – something a notch above Ike Davis.
            4. Moving one or more middle relievers to try and get better elsewhere.
            5. See what the market would offer for one of the A level prospects
            6. Trying to pull of something like Tampa Bay did with Longoria that would allow Polanco to be the starting RF opening day and buy out 1-3 years of FA eligibility.

            • Nate James

              Dude, the season hasn’t even started! You have no idea what the FO has tried or not tried. They just signed starling, and the GM said he was going to be active on trades.

              During the offseason he tried to sign loney for the same money he got from Tampa! If your argument over stahl holds true, the pirates could have done nothing. They also offered josh Johnson the same money San Diego got. Not extending a QO to AJ is really nothing in the grand scheme of things. I bet he faulters with the phils. I have said it all offseason, the 1st base position for FA was weak. Loney was the only option and he went back to the same team.

              Oh and I can bring up many situations in the past 5 years about what type of fan you are of Pittsburgh sports but it is pointless. You would refute all of them because pessimistic fans won’t call themselves pessimistic. They always blame the teams!

        • meatygettingsaucy

          Allow me to slaughter this post:
          “That was last year. Get over it – if you want to play with the big boys you don’t do it by sitting on your hands all winter.”

          Going off a fairly weak FA market and given the Pirates history of not relying on FA as long term solutions, what is the whining about? The Pirates made solid offers to two players they hoped to acquire: Josh Johnson and James Loney. Both chose to sign elsewhere. Get over it.

          “I am not an advocate of throwing money away – in fact if I was in Nutting’s shoes I would be doing exactly what he is doing – putting every spare dime on the bottom line and thanking the suckers that are Pirate fans for making me very happy.”

          The Pirates, as a small market team, do not spend heavily in the FA market. And I love this image you seem to paint of Nutting as Mr. Burns sitting there going, “Excellent.” The fact is, the Pirates payroll has increased substantially in the past 2 seasons but will never move into the middle of payrolls. Why? BECAUSE THEY ARE A SMALL MARKET TEAM. With that said, payroll means absolutely nothing to the quality of the team. You have McCutchen, Marte, Martin, Liriano, Cole, Alvarez, Walker, Melancon, Pimentel, Grilli, Wilson, Watson, etc. and yet they do not matter because they aren’t spending a ton of money on overpriced FA. Where in the guidebook to winning a title does it say “You must spend X amount of dollars to win”. It is mind boggling how people don’t seem to get that talent, NOT MONEY, wins games. The Pirates have a slew of talent and more coming. In addition they do not cost very much allowing, at the trade deadline, for the Pirates to acquire players and, guess what, you’ll never believe this… ADD PAYROLL like they did last year.

          “But what goes around sometimes comes around. The Brewers are a bit better – the Cards are at least as good – and there is a real chance [because of the FO sitting on it’s hands all off-season] that we find ourselves waking up on Labor Day in 5th Place.”

          Cardinals have improved slightly, Brewers are just about as good as they were last year. They have a ton of question marks all across their order. Cincinnati is worse and the Cubs are at least a year or two away before competing. Besides the Cards signing Peralta, there have been no major FA acquisitions in the entire division. But, somehow this jettisons the Pirates to last in the division. Brilliant logic!

          “If that should happen I don’t want to hear DK or any of the other paid sycophants wine about the lack of support from Pittsburgh fans – you reap what you sow..”

          First off, besides it not happening, DK is about as bad a writer now as they come. A few years back he was quite talented but his stuff turned south long ago, equating it to Smizik level reporting. What, in fact, have the Pirates sowed? They let the worse half of their platoon at 1B who is trending downward walk. They attempted to sign 3 FA (Burnett, Johnson, and Loney), each of whom elected to go elsewhere for various reasons: Burnett closer to home, Johnson wants to be on west coast, Loney comfortable in Tampa. You seem so incredible and bashing their lack of moves, tell us, what would you have done. And don’t give me the garbage of “Oh, well thats not my job”. Tell us, what vastly overpriced FA who would lead to the FO being unable to extend players (some of whom they are trying to extend right now) would you have signed?

          Thank you for providing such great material to work with.

          • http://www.acme-tv.com LongJohnSilver

            It is my belief that somewhere in-between lonely and meat is the real truth.

            The small market argument is getting old. KC/Tampa Bay/Brewers/Reds are all rated as having a smaller market size then Pitt. Yet, projected 14 salary’s show everyone of those teams with a higher payroll then the Pirate’s. I disagree with meats assessment that the Pirate’s attempted 3 FA signings. They had Burnett, and they let him get away without getting even a warm bottle of soda for him. I also believe that losing Morneau was a poor decision on their part as well. And remember the only reason we have Wandy this year is because of his injury last year, so HE told US he would be playing for the Pirate’s. Take away that 7M and the Pirate payroll is down around 64M. For a team that wants to be a strong contender in 2014, it appears that we did nothing to upgrade this team, instead we went bargain hunting and plan on the future panning out as we wish it to pan out. Already we see holes with that with Lambo struggling and Taillon hurting. The Pirate’s also knew they had more pitchers then spots in the bullpen over the winter, so rather dealing from a position of strength, they are now looking at getting a lower value in return on even possibly none. I would have dealt either Melancon or Grilli over the winter, probably Grilli as I have some caution about him repeating his 2013 performance. I applaud the Pirate’s for trying to extend some of the contracts now, but as in FA signings, they have to get it done or its all part of the floor show.

            So while meat is correct in saying that spending X amount of dollars doesn’t equate to winning, I would suggest that the lack of spending equates to a lack of winning. See Astro’s/Marlin’s.

            • NorCalBuc

              Long John ~ I’m happy you are on this blog, and NOT running this team. Conversely . . . .

              I am VERY pleased with Mr Nutting, et al!

          • Roberrto21

            Right on the mark!

          • lonleylibertarian

            We are in violent agreement meaty – TALENT – not money wins. But after you get past Cutch this is a pretty average team talent wise.
            1. Martin is a very good defensive catcher – but not a real offensive threat – the Cardinals have a catcher who does both – as do the Brewers. ZIPS has the Pirates at #12 in catching
            2. Walker – I love him – have an autographed shirt and think he is great in a lot of ways – but he is 29, injury prone and not on the right side of the aging curve – pathetic as a RH bat. Again the Bucs rank 12th – slightly ahead of the Cards who are going to start a rookie at 2nd base and slightly behind the Reds.
            3. Mercer – A nice surprise – but we need a couple of years of history – ZIPS has the Pirates in the 20s in SS rankings. Both Mercer and Walker are below average for their positions defensively.
            4. Pedro – see a pattern here – the Bucs rank 13th in 3rd base production – Pedro will continue to homer and strike out at high rates.
            5. Marte – good news – Starling gets the Bucs the #6 ranking in LF. Like Mercer we are at the beginning of what we can hope is a very bright career. But we need a year or two more of data.
            Going into the year 1st base and RF are black holes in terms of production – 28 and 22 respectfully
            As for the vaunted starting pitching…
            ZIPS ranked it 22nd – would move up to 17 or so if you swap Burnett for Volquez..
            The bullpen is a strength – but the FO seems reluctant to deal from this strength to try and improve elsewhere.

            So tell me again about all the great talent this team has…
            I see two really good position players – one is entering his second year so we still need to be suspect a bit..
            Then I see a whole bunch of pretty average talent – easily replaced.
            A couple of quality starters – and a great bull pen

            As for there is a lot of really good talent in the pipeline – prospects are just that prospects – some turn out great – others turn into Brad Lincoln.

            • leowalter

              That ” black hole ” comment tells me that you certainly have been paying a lot of attention to a certain retired PPG sportswriter who quite frankly,has no idea of how or why the MLB of the 21st century is different than 1990’s operations. And I might add,that descriptive phrase needs to be parked along with others of that ilk such as ” drinking the FO Kool Aid “. It needs a break.

        • Y2JGQ2

          Lonely- You have a reasonable amount of insight and I agree with you at times, but what the hell are you talking about? Anywhere you can find value you take it, even if its small. This is a no risk, all upside move. We have the same pieces that won us 95 games last year…..except AJ, so who cares? I would have loved to see us outbid for Loney, but other than that, there was almost nothing out there to get except for some more interesting buy low starting pitchers like Josh Johnson, that quite frankly….we didn’t need to be successful. Take a step back and see the forest through the trees my friend

          • Nate James

            Been my argument all offseason. Glad someone agrees there was nothing out in free agency!

          • leowalter

            Y2 : your sentiments are mine. It looks to me like lonely has been co-erced into moving to Smizikstan. What happened man ? I found myself in agreement with you most of the time comments on this thread look completely different to me.

  • BuccosFanStuckinMD

    couldn’t we have given them Volquez straight up and kept the cash??

  • wkkortas

    Vance Worley has just announced “Operation Shutout.”

    • Mr. Goodkat

      Considering he’s a pitcher…is that a GOOD thing or a BAD thing? Heh

  • Thom

    I’d bet anything the Pirates get him to give up his cutter and go back to the slider.

  • leowalter

    Nate, it is kind of obvious the guy is in the organization for 1 reason : to pitch in Indy, or maybe even down to Altoona.

    • Nate James

      The guy has talent, we have been able to give pitchers a second chance, and see them rebound. I am not saying this is the greatest move ever! But it’s a depth move that could at one time (maybe not this year) pay off! I am an optimist.

  • smurph

    The discussion has gotten off-subject, and I just don’t get the negativity here. This is another no-risk reclamation project. The Vanimal is only 26 and had very impressive stuff just 2 1/2 years ago. He has had some shoulder problems. So, number one make sure his shoulder is 100%. Number two, teach him to throw and control the 2-seamer fastball. As Dreker said, Taillon is down for a couple of weeks, so there could be a short-term spot for him as a starter.