It’s silly to think that professional athletes need it, but they do. Sometimes, millions of dollars or living out the childhood dreams of many don’t quite cut it. There is one thing that motivates everybody, though: the fact that someone else can come in and do your job.
When the Minnesota Twins traded Ben Revere to the Phillies, they got a ready-to-go MLB starter in Vance Worley and a top prospect in Trevor May. May was brought in for the 2014 season, but he can have an impact in 2013.
Motivation is what May will bring to the table in 2013. The Twins will have yet another revamped roster at the start of the season, and everyone is expendable. With that in mind, those starters need to know that May will be sitting in the minors, waiting for the call.
Obviously, May was not brought in just for motivation, but to pitch somewhere down the line. Still, his presence could push the starters.
For example, say Rich Harden gets a spot in the starting rotation. First off, Harden should be very excited that he gets that opportunity, but wouldn’t there be a little more focus and motivation knowing that there’s a pretty good pitcher waiting in the minors?
I’m not saying that Harden isn't focused or motivated, I just used his name as an example. You could pick any player who could find themselves in the Twins' Opening Day starting rotation.
The scarier thing for Twins starters is that they don’t just have to look out for May. They also have to look out for Alex Meyer and Kyle Gibson. One false move by an Opening Day starter, and there are three pretty good options right behind them.
Don’t forget that Trevor May is a pretty good pitcher, too.