Revere eager to help with fine catch in debut
Outfielder looks forward to being in Blue Jays' push for postseason
TORONTO -- Outfielder Ben Revere went from one extreme to the other on Friday afternoon when he was traded to the Blue Jays after spending the last three seasons with the Phillies.
Revere made his Toronto debut and went hitless in a 7-6 loss to Kansas City on Saturday, but he did make a leaping catch at the wall in left to rob Kendrys Morales of extra bases in the sixth. Even just by looking at him, it's easy to tell how excited Revere is by the new surroundings.
Philadelphia has been a distant afterthought for most of the year with a club that entered Saturday 15 1/2 games out of first place in the National League East and a record that is 24 games below .500. In Toronto, Revere joins a team that hopes it is on the cusp of something special.
"I know a bunch of guys that have gone from a team in last place to eventually be traded to a team that won the World Series," Revere said on Saturday morning in his first interview with the Toronto media. "I called them this offseason and I was just like you lucky dog. Hopefully someone can call me and tell me I'm a lucky dog.
"We have a great team here, we're definitely in the hunt and hopefully we make that magic run. Every time I see the videos, when Joe Carter hit the walk-off home run [in the 1993 World Series], it kind of gives you goosebumps a little bit just to not have that revived in the playoff atmosphere because I've never experienced it."
Revere made his Blue Jays debut on Saturday against the Royals out of the leadoff spot as Troy Tulowitzki got the day off, but Revere is expected to spend most of his time near the bottom of the order.
The 27-year-old gives Toronto's lineup an element it was missing before, which is speed and an ability to consistently put the ball in play. He hit .298 with a .334 on-base percentage and 24 stolen bases in 96 games with the Phillies. Last season, Revere led the league in hits with 184 and should be able to help manufacture some runs as the bottom of the order turns over for the heart of the lineup.
The trade didn't come as a total surprise to Revere because his name had been frequently mentioned in rumours leading up to the non-waiver Trade Deadline. There was interest from the Orioles, but in the end it was Toronto that came out with the winning bid after agreeing to trade pitching prospects Jimmy Cordero and Alberto Tirado.
"Usually, I like to stay up the middle, react to the inside pitch," Revere said of his approach. "My game is not too really around the ball. I usually hit hard ground balls to make it hard for the infielders to get my speed.
"Rod Carew, the Hall of Famer, told me 'son, just keep your hands inside the ball, hit the ball on the ground, hit line drives and you're going to make a good living and find a lot of hits.' That's my main focus, to stay up the middle and react to the inside pitch. All things said, I'm just trying to be just like Rod Carew."