Ben Revere Rides to Philly

There are going to be buckets of “ones by land” in Philadelphia next year. Ben Revere has been traded to the Phillies, where he’ll continue to ply his speed-based game. Most fantasy players don’t have to be concerned with questions about defense or patience, but there are flaws to his game that are worth spotlighting.

It’s tempting to care about the park factors at play. Minnesota suppresses home runs by eight percent! Philadelphia augments home runs by four percent! All the home runs! Ben Revere has hit five home runs in 2819 professional plate appearances. He hasn’t hit a major league home run yet. He has a 67.7% ground-ball rate. The park won’t matter for his power because he has no power.

He can still help you in a few categories. Revere stole 40 bases — good for third in the big leagues — in only 553 plate appearances. Give him 703 plate appearances like Michael Bourn got last year, and Revere should out-steal the old man. After all, he’ll turn 25 next season and has five years of youth on the older free agent. You have to believe in Bourn’s power surge — nine home runs last year after holding stead around two-to-three a year for most of his career — in order to rate Bourn much higher than Revere.

There are also lineup factors. Bourn will walk more. His career walk rate is right around average while Revere has consistently shown an inability to take the free pass at a ‘passable’ rate. It’s unclear where Bourn will end up next year, but the Phillies did end up in the top half of the National League in runs scored last season. Maybe that will help offset some of the difference that comes from walk rate.

This sort of pattern actually holds steady across other facets of the their respective games. Bourn has more power, but strikes out more. One of those things helps your batting average, one hurts. Revere has more speed, but less power. That means more stolen bases with equal playing time, and fewer home runs.

What you’re left with is two similar players in 2013. And one should be more expensive than the other, leaving Revere as a possible value pick.

But before you get too excited, remember Juan Pierre. There isn’t a more similar player to Ben Revere than Juan Pierre, and we’re all well versed in the pratfalls associated with rostering a no-power player. If you had Juan Pierre in a slot, you’d be a step up in stolen bases, but you’d also be twenty homers short of an average slot in a lineup. Pierre (or Revere) means you need to find a forty-home-run player just to field an average power lineup.

Six players in baseball hit 40 or more home runs last year.




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Graphs: Baseball, Roto, Beer, brats (OK, no graphs for that...yet), repeat. Follow him on Twitter @enosarris.


8 Responses to “Ben Revere Rides to Philly”

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  1. Stuck in a slump says:

    Or two thirty HR players. This could be made up by drafting guys like Tulowitzki or Cano who have power from premium positions and not taking risks on upside by drafting solid power hitters more aggressively like Aramis Ramirez, Napoli, Ortiz, and Willingham.

    I personally prefer to draft guys who are more likely to produce double digit steals with enough power to hit more than 20 HR as much as possible, but if you can draft guys like Bourn and Revere later, you should be set with SB and you can focus more on all power types like Hart, if either one gets hurt, then a guy like Pierre will probably be available as a free agent and can replace the kind of production that you had with Revere or Bourn. You just have to be willing to put all of your SB’s in two players.

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  2. jcxy says:

    Is today opposite day on Fangraphs? The tone of this coverage wild!

    How many WAR/worthwhile fantasy seasons did Michael Bourn put up through his age 24 season? How about Ben Revere? One might sign a 4/60 deal through age 36. The other is 24 and is basically free (sorry, for a 4th starter and a tarnished bullpen arm with potential) for two more years of league min. On a team with budget constraints and an average age pushing 30?

    Back to reality…

    In 2013, if my choices are $20 for Bourn vs…what, 3? 4? for Revere? Is this really even a choice??? If the other option is Rajai Davis for $1/2…I’ll take the kid with the guaranteed time… If anyone is overpaying for steals…well, good luck with that.

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    • Eno Sarris says:

      Obviously if you get Revere for that price, he’s fine. I think that statement is consistent with what I wrote. But there are problems with rostering a no power guy (and in real-life, a no-power, no-patience, no-arm CF), and they’ve all been covered with Juan Pierre in the past.

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      • jcxy says:

        I don’t mean to take out my curiosity with the main page article here…

        But I still disagree. The problem isn’t rostering those guys as I see it. It’s when you *overpay* for that skillset, right? In part because a supply of Rajai Davis/Dave Roberts types are always floating on waivers.

        But also…Go back to 2011 (the year after Pierre’s 68 steal effort). His ADP was roughly 10th round. That’s a sin. You’d be wasting what should be a pick that reliably turns a profit on a guy with significant downside. But if you wanted to go on the Pierre ride, you had to pay the toll.

        What I’m saying is…here is the Pierre ride at non-vintage Pierre prices. Previously, Pierre and his price were inseparable (and therefore inadvisable, I agree). But Revere, to me, is super interesting at what I assume is his price point ($3-5) because of the guaranteed PT (something that the waiver wire guys generally don’t offer) and win-you-the-category speed. Plus, if you go in with this strategy you can take that money you saved filling an OF position cheaply and allocate it towards bumping up tiers in another position (or two). I’d wager you’d more often than not compensate for those 15 HR.

        IDK. Maybe I’m crazy, but his value prop suddenly looks really appealing…

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      • jcxy says:

        And in the real world, WAR is WAR, right? Or is Miggy Cabrera’s wOBA the only facet of the game we care about here…defense and baserunning don’t matter?

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  3. Ragoczy says:

    It comes down to price and value and what you have at other positions. If you have a Tulo or Phillips or someone similar in the MI you can get away with a low price (ie, under value) Revere in one of your OF spots. You may have to make sure you have 25-30 hr guys instead of 20 hr guys in a couple of spots to help make up the difference, but if you’re getting Revere for $5 or less you should have the money to do so.

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