Phillies Nation Player Review: Ben Revere – Phillies Nation
2013 Player Reviews

Phillies Nation Player Review: Ben Revere



No matter what Charlie Manuel tried having you believe at the end of the 2012 season, it was clear to Phillies analysts and fans alike that the team needed a new leadoff hitter. Jimmy Rollins was coming off one of the worst seasons of his career hitting .250 with an OBP of .316, his lowest OBP since 2009. Enter Ben Revere.

On December 6, 2012, Revere was traded to the Phillies from the Minnesota Twins in exchange for 2011 rookie sensation Vance Worley and top prospect Trevor May. After a strong spring training, Revere was officially named the opening day leadoff hitter.

Unfortunately, he started the season poorly and suffered a quadriceps injury in April that kept him out of the lineup for several games. When Revere returned in early May he saw his leadoff spot taken back by Jimmy Rollins and was demoted to the eighth spot in the lineup.

This seemed to light a fire under Revere.

By the end of May he was back at the top of the lineup as Manuel hoped to spark the offense. He did just that, and by the start of June Revere was finding his stroke. Unluckily, Revere suffered a fractured foot on July 14th after a foul ball hit him while at-bat. By this point he had raised his average to .305 on the season and his OBP to .338. He did this by hitting .407 with a .909 OPS in his final 29 games before his season-ending injury. The Phillies seemed to have finally found a worthwhile option atop their lineup. On a team that had the 7th worst OBP and 10th worst batting average in all of Major League Baseball in 2013, this was a huge loss for the Phillies and their run production.

The start of 2013 was slow for Revere, but as the days got hotter, so did he; until a broken foot ended his season prematurely. Revere will likely be the opening day center fielder for the Phillies and a crucial part of the lineup. Scoring runs has been a major problem for the Phillies the past few seasons, and they will continue to struggle without a reliable leadoff hitter to get on base. The Phillies have to hope they get the Revere they saw in June and parts of July, and not the Revere that opened the season for them in April and May.

Ben Revere could be a spark for the Phillies lineup in 2014. However, his 2013 season only lasted 88 games and was a tale of two stories. Philadelphia still isn’t quite sure in what they have with the 25-year-old centerfielder.

Grade: Incomplete- Revere played in only 88 games and struggled early, however his potential was evident before he went down with an injury. I’m holding off on a grade for him until we still him play through September and hopefully October.



  1. Double Trouble Del

    November 22, 2013 at 10:05 am

    There is no discussion of his defensive skills which were adequate at best. He has exceptional speed but he doesn’t seem to be able to read the ball off of the bat or take good routes to the call which result in routine plays becoming adventures.

    • Brass Villanueva

      November 22, 2013 at 12:46 pm

      Not only did he run bad routes, but he was constantly allowing runners to take the extra base because of his subpar arm.

  2. schmenkman

    November 22, 2013 at 10:55 am

    Martin — congrats on your first article. Nicely done.

    A couple of comments on Rollins’ 2012 season, which I don’t think is correct to characterize as one of the worst of his career. His hitting, summarized best by wRC+ (wOBA relative to the league) was the 6th best of his (at that point) 12-year career, and in fact only one year has been significantly better at the plate, his MVP year of 2007. And his fielding was still very good, at least according to UZR.

    As for his leadoff abilities, agreed that his OBP was down, but among the 16 NL leadoff hitters in 2012, Rollins had the…

    9th highest OBP
    6th highest OPS
    3rd highest walk rate
    2nd lowest strikeout rate

    In any case, while it’s very unlikely he can keep up the torrid pace he was on, I look forward to what Revere can do in 2014. As DTD says his routes leave a lot to be desired, but he has enough speed and athleticism to outrun mistakes and at least be an average center fielder, and perhaps even somewhat better.

  3. Bart Shart

    November 22, 2013 at 12:21 pm

    Revere will improve. He is smart, he does not try to hit the long ball and he can run. Hope his foot injury completely heals. Revere is a “Juan Pierre” type ballplayer who hustles, has a great attitude and will be an asset to the Phils for the next three years or longer , if he stays healthy.

    • schmenkman

      November 22, 2013 at 12:36 pm

      “he does not try to hit the long ball”

      In related news, Ryan Howard doesn’t try to hit inside the park home runs.

      • wbramh

        November 23, 2013 at 3:42 pm

        Where’s Big Ed Delahanty when we need him?
        Oh well, I guess those days are just water under the falls.

        Too soon?

    • ABBR - Anybody But Ben Revere

      November 22, 2013 at 2:21 pm

      It’s not that he doesn’t try to hit the long ball rather its that he’s completely incapable of hitting a ball over the fence unless he’s standing on a little league diamond. Hamlets and Lee have more pop. Frankly, given the questionable health of aging guys like Howard, Utley, Rollins, Byrd and Ruiz that leaves Dom Brown assuming he’s able to stay in the lineup as the only guy who can provide any hope of driving the ball out of the park. As they’re presently constituted I don’t want another pitcher in the everyday lineup. He’ll if the Phillies played in the AL I’d let the pitchers hit and use Reveres spot for a DH. Five years ago with everybody in their prime and Werth in RF a true optimist could look at Revere as a table-setter and an asset. But these days he’s ill-suited to this team and that’s assuming that his foot will be 100%.

      And the Juan Pierre comparison is most appropriate when discussing his arm which would inspire just about anybody to take an extra base even guys like Pablo Sandoval, or present day Bob Hamelin or Boog Powell.

      Mark my words, the Phil’s won’t ever make the playoffs with Revere as an everyday player.

      • Lucas

        November 23, 2013 at 11:23 am

        I will mark your words. ABBR: “the Phil’s won’t ever make the playoffs with Revere as an everyday player”

      • wbramh

        November 23, 2013 at 2:37 pm

        “Mark my words, the Phil’s won’t ever make the playoffs with Revere as an everyday player.”

        Wll you can mark my words; the Cubs will never make the playoffs with Ernie Banks at short.

        I’m not a big Revere fan either, but come on, now. One player does not make or break a team and the Phils could do far worse than Ben… and did.

    • schmenkman

      November 22, 2013 at 2:53 pm

      Maybe it’s meant to be hyperbole, but the last sentence is just way off. There are countless examples of bad players on postseason teams, but we don’t have to look any further than the Phillies.

      2011’s Ibanez was certainly worse than Revere.
      2009’s Pedro Feliz is at best as good, and I’d say worse than Revere.
      2007’s Nunez/Dobbs/Helms at third were also worse.

      Revere is not ill-suited to the team. If he gets on base, uses his legs, and plays decent defense, he’ll provide value and help them win. Now all you need is one of those 2007-2011 teams around him.

      • George

        November 22, 2013 at 3:23 pm

        When discussing Revere, why would you even bother to respond to someone who goes by “ABBR-Anybody But Ben Revere?” You might as well try to throw a battleship through a mountain.

  4. Lefty

    November 22, 2013 at 4:03 pm

    Ben Revere surprised me after his slow start. I still have some doubts, but I like the guy and am hoping for the best. As far as whether or not he tries to hit home runs, he said he didn’t during a booth visit one game with TMac and Wheeler. He said he hoped to “run into one” which is acceptable to me, so long as he has AB’s and results like he did in the latter part of his season.

    If someone would just coach him to play the outfield to the best of his strength limitations, – for instance, playing bounces off the wall instead of going for the Willie Mays style circus catch, he would limit base runners to doubles instead of triples, and singles instead of doubles. Then maybe he could at least be a league average fielder despite his routes and arm.

    • Jay

      November 23, 2013 at 4:28 pm

      Amen Lefty

  5. Matt

    November 22, 2013 at 5:13 pm

    Ben might as well run The ball into the infield, my mom has a better throwing arm. Of corse it wouldn’t hurt if jimmy or chase moves out a little farther for the cut off, but I still think Ben should run the ball in. Ben is going to be a bust. As soon as those legs get hurt his game is over. I see .220 at best without his legs.

  6. Jaron B

    November 22, 2013 at 5:50 pm

    My grades for Revere:

    Note: I grade him from Opening Day until the ASG. The 2nd half is always “No Grade.”

    Offense: B+. He struggled from mid-Apr to early May, but really excelled in May & June. Certainly a top-of-the-order type hitter if he can walk more.
    Defense: C+. While his range in CF is brilliant, he did struggle with throwing the ball into the IF after a normal catch (when he runs a bit and catches it semi-nonchalantly). Certainly a slight downgrade from a younger version of Shane Victorino.

    Overall: B. He has potential, yes. Since he’s only going to earn about $1.5MM in 2014, I approve of him for one of the primary OF spots next season. Let’s try him in a corner spot.

    • Carlos Danger

      November 22, 2013 at 7:14 pm

      By “corner spot” you must mean LF. There’s no way you can have Revere’s arm in right.

      • ABBR - Anybody But Ben Revere

        November 23, 2013 at 3:13 pm

        Maybe a corner of the dugout. He’s A modern day Ricky Otero. “Slight downgrade”? He’s so overmatched its ridiculous. Ask yourself how many teams would start Revere over their current players in CF or LF. Better yet ask yourself how many teams with playoff aspirations would start him. He couldn’t even start for the NY Mess. I really can’t fathom how anybody can rationally say he’s a starting caliber ML outfielder.

      • wbramh

        November 23, 2013 at 3:26 pm

        ABBR: “Better yet ask yourself how many teams with playoff aspirations would start him?”

        I have a suspicion the play-off contending Braves would entertain a call to Ruben.

      • schmenkman

        November 23, 2013 at 3:38 pm

        ABBR, you will either need to find another player to bash, or make claims that are tougher to check.

        Even though Revere only played a little more than half the season, he was more productive offensively than 22 starting outfielders. That’s by the comprehensive advanced stat Runs Above Average, combining hitting and base running.

        12 of those 22 were on playoff contenders.

      • wbramh

        November 23, 2013 at 3:56 pm

        Faced with such irrefutable evidence of Revere’s higher worth as a center fielder, ABBR is going to have to change his initials to stand for “Anybody But Brooks Robinson.”
        That should serve ABBR better since at age 76 Brooks likely has a tougher time bending for ground balls.

  7. wbramh

    November 23, 2013 at 5:20 pm

    Strictly on a talent basis I would love to see Ellsbury patrolling center but as I’ve come to appreciate the folly in the dollars and years his signing would tie up. In other words, I’ve done a 180 in my thinking. There’s something to be said for examining at how successful teams in the last few years have built winners. Short-term signings and investment in the farm system is obviously the way to go. I look at the huge contracts of players like Howard, Rodriguez, Pujols and now Fielder and all I see is a boat anchor many teams are lucky to lose. The Cards and now the Tigers were smart. It will be interesting to see which team springs for Cano and if he receives anywhere close to his asking price. Even the Yankees will probably (and uncharacteristically) let him walk. I believe it’s going to get a lot tougher for star players, even above-average players to secure the stratospheric contracts we’ve seen in the last few years as more front offices do the math.
    Makes Byrd look like a better deal -but I fear the Mets did better getting Chris Young and at lower dollars.

    • G7

      November 24, 2013 at 11:14 am

      I like the Byrd signing over Young easily..Young is a high strikeout low batting average and the money wasn’t that much different. The best deal so far was probably the Cardinals getting Bourjos and Grichuk for Freese and Salas. The Cardinals with Wacha, Miller, Rosenthal, Martinez are set up to be very good for a long time.

      • wbramh

        November 24, 2013 at 11:53 am

        I don’t particularly care for either signing – not that I care so much about the Mets’ choices but at least Chris Young has the improved defensive tools Ruben said he was looking for as well as the ability to play CF if needed. Both seem to be stop gap signings. Young is the cheaper for whatever that is worth to two teams that need a lot just to compete for third place.

        As for the Cards, yep, they just keep getting better, faster and younger. The makings of a 5-year dynasty but with the addition of front office brains that could stretch it to a decade.

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