Phillies Avoid Arbitration with Ben Revere
The Phillies closed the books on their arbitration season Friday, reaching an agreement with center fielder Ben Revere on a $1.95 million deal for the 2014 season. This is Revere’s first year or arbitration eligibility.
Revere, 25, was acquired last offseason for pitchers Vance Worley and Trevor May, and played in 88 games before breaking his right ankle fouling a pitch off it in July. Revere was in the midst of a two-and-a-half-month-long rebound from an abysmal April before the injury, hitting .347/.380/.404 in 240 PA from May 1 on.
Revere also demonstrated competent center field ability (and, at times, quite a bit more than that) and will be handed the starting job for opening day. Revere also figures to be a frontrunner for the lead-off position, as his plus contact ability and minuscule power don’t make him a great fit many other places in the order, outside of the very bottom (which would be unlikely, given the archetype, if he’s playing well).
Revere’s May through mid-July tear came due in large part to a great deal of success on pitches in the upper half (regardless of whether it was in the strike zone). He hit .377/.421/.443 in 116 PA that ended on a pitch in that upper half from May 1 until his July 13 injury, according to TruMedia, which placed him in a tie for ninth in AVG and 22nd in OBP over that stretch.
Having 10 weeks or so to recover from the injury and subsequent surgery should have Revere at full strength this spring. At less than $2 million, he has the chance to be a very valuable member of the club, especially if his defense holds (or is better) and he hits like the Revere of Not April we saw last season.