Ben Revere may not have been the center fielder that many Phillies fans wanted this offseason, but once you learn a little bit about him, it is clear that he is exactly the center fielder that this team needs. Before I get into detail as to why that is, let's first address the question I can guess has been on many minds since the trade was announced: "Ben, who?"
You were not alone if this was your response to the Philadelphia Phillies trade with the Minnesota Twins. Leaving to go to Minnesota: Vance Worley, a former 11-game winner from 2011 and Trevor May, a top prospect in the organization who fell off a bit after a 10-13 season in 2012 at Reading. Returning to Philadelphia was the 24-year-old native from the state of Georgia, Ben Revere.
When the offseason began, Revere was a name that wasn't even on the Phillies' radar. BJ Upton was considered the team's major target and top goal, but he chose to sign with the rival Atlanta Braves. San Francisco's Angel Pagan was another option, but he too went elsewhere. Free agency seemed to be the direction the Phils were heading in, but the Colorado Rockies' Dexter Fowler came up as a possibility as well. The Phillies did have remote interest in a Twins' center fielder, but his name was Denard Span, and like Upton, he ended up with an NL East rival in the Washington Nationals.
When it was announced that the Phillies had found their center fielder, the expectation was that Michael Bourn would be making his return to the team. I don't think many expected however, that taking Shane Victorino's spot next year would be a second-year player who has a .278 batting average, 33 extra base hits and 74 stolen bases in his career.
To be honest, "Ben, who?" was exactly the question I asked when I first heard the trade. Being the baseball enthusiast I am however, I wasn't content with that question. So I asked around and I did my research, and came to the conclusion I stated above.
While Revere may not be Upton or Bourn or really anybody that many would have wanted to see in Phillies pinstripes, he fills a need perfectly for this team. And for those of you still questioning how, hopefully I can clear some of that up.