Morneau Backs Worley, Twins In 5-4 Win Over Pirates
That’s the way the right-hander likes it.
Worley was acquired in a trade with Philadelphia for outfielder Ben Revere. The right-hander gave up two hits and struck out one, far better than his previous start at Hammond Stadium while pitching for the Phillies last March. Worley gave up 11 runs off 11 hits in that exhibition game, including a two-run homer to Morneau.
“A lot worse than I did today,” Worley said, recalling that outing. “A lot worse. Let’s put that one behind us. I’ll take what I did today.”
With a new-look starting rotation for the Twins, Worley has the chance to rise to the top of it.
“I like the way he looks out there,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “He looks like a gunslinger out there. His windup, the way he stands out there. The ball was coming out of his hand well.”
Worley went 6-9 with a 4.20 ERA in 23 starts for the Phillies last season with 107 strikeouts in 133 innings. As a rookie in 2011, he went 11-3 with a 3.01 ERA in 25 appearances, including 21 starts.
“To me, it’s just about right now,” Worley said of the opportunity to be the staff ace. “If I don’t do that well, it doesn’t matter where I’m at in the rotation. It’s a matter of going out there and making sure everything’s working right. If I do that, everything will take care of itself.”
“We’re trying to get him five innings a game,” Gardenhire said of preparing Morneau for the tournament. “We’re getting there. We’ll get him some more at bats. He’s feeling really good. He’s been through all the drills.”
Jose Tabata homered for the Pirates.
Kyle McPherson, in contention for the fifth spot in Pittsburgh’s rotation, needed just 12 pitches to finish his two innings. The right-hander gave up one hit.
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