PITTSBURGH -- It has been a long road back for Vance Worley.
Worley pitched for the Phillies from 2010-12, finishing third in National League Rookie of the Year voting in 2011 before the Phillies traded the popular right-hander to Minnesota in December 2012 as part of the Ben Revere trade. Worley struggled in Minnesota in 2013 and again in Spring Training this year, when the Twins placed him on waivers and outrighted him to Triple-A before trading him to the Pirates in March for cash.
But Worley is back in the big leagues, healthy and pitching effectively after solving some simple mechanical problems. He is 2-1 with a 2.28 ERA in four starts. He pitched Thursday, so he missed facing his former team by one day. But he could get a chance to the face the Phillies in September, when the Pirates visit Citizens Bank Park.
Asked if he thought about a potential return to the Phillies, Worley said: "It would have been nice. My wife is out there and everything else, but it's part of the game. Why would they take a chance on me after struggling last year and doing pretty bad this spring again? It's just a matter of who wants to take the risk, and these guys were all about it."
A's trade with Cubs unlikely to alter Phils' plans
PITTSBURGH -- The A's pushed their chips all-in on Friday, when they sent two top prospects and right-hander Dan Straily, who has made 41 big league starts, to the Cubs for Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel.
If the Phillies plan on trading some starting pitching before the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline, they can cross Oakland off their list.
"It doesn't really affect us all that much," Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said Saturday afternoon at PNC Park.
Pretty much everybody in the Phillies' rotation could be available before the deadline: Cole Hamels, Cliff Lee, A.J. Burnett, Kyle Kendrick and Roberto Hernandez. Some obviously carry more trade value than others, but some are also owed tens of millions of dollars on their contracts and have partial no-trade clauses, making things tricky.
But could the A's trade raise the bar for a team's asking price?
"It doesn't affect us all that much," Amaro said. "It's a separate issue. We're still looking at it. We'll continue to assess the club and kind of go from there."
Amaro sees progress by outfielder Sizemore
PITTSBURGH -- Phillies general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. offered a few injury and Minor League updates Saturday afternoon at PNC Park:
• Triple-A outfielder Grady Sizemore entered Saturday hitting .360 (9-for-25) with one home run, four walks and three strikeouts in six games. He can opt out of his contract at the All-Star break if he is not in the big leagues.
"He's playing better," Amaro said. "He's getting the reps he needs. He seems to be moving well."
The Phillies will play Sizemore in right field at some point because they want to make sure he can play all three outfield positions.
• Right-hander Jason Marquis has a 0.69 ERA over two starts in Triple-A. He is recovering from Tommy John surgery from less than a year ago.
"He's getting Triple-A hitters out, and, frankly, the Triple-A hitters aren't very good across the board," Amaro said. "But he is throwing well. He's keeping the ball down and throwing strikes pretty consistently. He's still got a little ways to go."
• Triple-A outfielder and first baseman Darin Ruf could be activated Sunday or Monday. He has been out with an injured left wrist and lacerated right knee.
• Minor League shortstop Freddy Galvis (collarbone) and catcher Tommy Joseph (wrist) could be within a week of playing in games again.
Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.