Minnesota Twins: Revisiting the Ben Revere Trade
This past off-season when the Minnesota Twins traded Denard Span and Ben Revere in a matter of a week, a message was sent throughout the Twins organization: acquiring pitching comes at a price. Span and Revere were two of the brightest players on the Twins team during an abysmal 2012 and fans figured that one—if not both—would play a huge role in the Twins’ future; boy were we all wrong. The highlight and silver lining behind all of the trades was that the Twins were said to have acquired some very talented pitchers in Alex Meyer, Trevor May and Vance Worley. Worley and May were acquired in the Revere trade and as of now, the returns haven’t been great for the Twins or the Philadelphia Phillies.
While the jury is still out on what type of pitcher May will become—all signs point to him developing into a middle to back of the rotation starter—the verdict on Worley is becoming increasingly bleak, especially after the Twins demoted the prized right-hander to Triple-A on May 22nd. Before his demotion, Worley looked overmatched, out of control, frustrated and overhyped. For the 2013 season, Worley has sported a 1-5 record with a 7.21 ERA, a 1.99 WHIP and a .381 batting average against in 10 starts. Since his demotion, Worley has been up and down with a 1-3 record, a 4.74 ERA and a 1.58 WHIP over four starts for Triple-A Rochester.
When Worley was demoted, manager Ron Gardenhire stated that “Ultimately, he misfires too much over the middle of the plate, and you see the ball flying. When he’s got the ball down, he does a really nice job.”
Unfortunately, Worley hasn’t been able to consistently solve this problem during his four starts at Triple-A and his future is greatly in jeopardy with the Twins long-term. Until he develops good use all of his pitches and can show command and toughness consistently, Worley will not be a factor for the Twins.
With Worley performing so poorly and the Twins struggling to find outfield depth—especially with the recent injury to Revere’s replacement in centerfield Aaron Hicks—many fans are wishing the trade involving Revere could be undone and up to this point, I cannot argue with them. So far this year, Revere hasn’t been the leadoff hitter and on-base machine that the Phillies envisioned when they acquired him, but the speedster is starting to come on and find his niche as of late.
For the season, Revere is hitting .266 with zero HR, seven RBI, 15 SB and a .306 on-base percentage, despite sporting a 0.2 WAR on the year, over 61 games and 207 at-bats. While those numbers aren’t “eye-popping”, the energy and potential that Revere showed when he was with the Twins is something that the organization is sorely missing in his absence. In addition, the Twins are in dire need of a leadoff hitter and although Revere is not hitting as well as he is used to, he still would be an upgrade and a perfect fit at the top of the Twins’ lineup.
Although I believe the Twins made a mistake by trading away Revere, I’m not willing to fully endorse the notion that the Twins lost out in the Revere trade; but I am saying that it is increasingly looking bleak. I was always a huge proponent of Revere and thought he was the perfect player to have for the Twins on their team and at the top of the lineup because of his speed, ability to get on base and inexpensive price tag. If Worley fails to turn it around, the trade will then be judged based on how well May develops. However, until the Twins find a legitimate leadoff hitter and until Worley and May demonstrate they can develop into more than average big-league starters, I will continue to believe the Twins made a mistake by trading Revere.
Unfortunately in sports, there are no “do-overs” in regards to trades. If there were, I’d urge the Twins to use their mulligan on this trade and get back their young and talented leadoff hitter. Since this is not possible, the only thing left to do for the Twins is to continue to countdown the days until mega-prospect and franchise cornerstone Byron Buxton makes his way to the majors. In case you were wondering, I’ve got the countdown at 456 days and counting.