Revere riding into Philly with his own highlight reel
New center fielder reminisces about plays he made famous in Minnesota
PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- Before the Phillies played their first Grapefruit League game last month, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel stopped short in his assessment of Ben Revere because he had not seen him play very much.
"I go on what I see, once I see him," Manuel said at the time.
Well, Revere has impressed. He has hit .303 (10-for-33) with one double, two RBIs, two walks, three stolen bases and six strikeouts in 10 Grapefruit League games. He has shown his considerable skills in center field, too.
"I hadn't seen him play but three games last year," Manuel said Thursday about Revere when asked about the spring's biggest surprises. "I didn't remember a whole lot about him. He looks like a good player. He looks like a good offensive player, and he definitely can go get the ball in center field."
If Revere does what he did with the Minnesota Twins, he should make his fair share of highlight worthy plays. MLB.com asked Revere to talk about four of his most memorable plays. He threw in one we missed.
Somersault triple July 15, 2011, at Target Field against the Royals. "As soon as the ball got by [Jeff Francoeur] … I didn't know if the ball came right back to him. Target Field is a crazy stadium. You've got so many bumps and bounces. I kind of looked back and kind of saw he was about to pick up the ball. So then I look to see where second base was and it was right underneath me, so I kind of toe-tapped it and that's how I lost my footing. I knew I was about to fall down, so I forced myself to do a front flip so I wouldn't miss a beat. I kept going and the third base coach was like, 'What was that?' I was like, 'I don't know.' It just took all my energy. I couldn't believe that happened. My family was there for it. They were joking with me, but I didn't listen to it. Really, it was my dad and my brother. My grandpa just sat there laughing. They were talking about running and this and that. I was like, 'All right, whatever, guys.'"
Climbing up the wall Aug. 22, 2011, at Target Field off the Orioles' Vladimir Guerrero. "First, off the bat, I thought it was going to be a home run. When I was running back I saw it was kind of dying. I looked at the fence, looked back at the ball, I'm like, 'I may have a chance at this.' I just leapt for the ball and it fell in my glove. I came off the fence, looked in my glove and the ball was there. After the game I had like 50 phone calls, a bunch of text messages from people: 'Dude, I just saw your catch. It was unbelievable.' It was a pretty good experience. You have to be cognizant of where the wall is. You have to see the ball, of course. That's why you take two steps, look back, two steps, look back. We worked on that when I was real young, when I first started playing the outfield and stuff. Just doing that really helped me in that situation."
Basket catch Sept. 15, 2012, at Target Field off the White Sox' A.J. Pierzynski. "That one, the ball just kind of took off. The same way with [Vladimir] Guerrero, it just took off. Then it kind of died a little bit. I knew I was near the fence, so I'm like, 'I'm about to crash into the fence. I'm about to crash into it.' I put my glove out, caught it and the fence was right there so I braced myself. That portion of the outfield wasn't padded, so I just braced myself and caught it. That was a big one because it almost helped us win the game, but we fell short. It's kind of like football, if you're about to take a big hit you're going to have to squeeze up, because if you go loose it's going to hurt even more. In that situation, you catch it and squeeze your body so the impact won't be so hard that you hurt yourself. I played wide receiver in high school football, so I took some hits. Luckily, I was squeezed up, so I was ready for it. It's like a little football play. It's like the safeties coming in to take your head off. You've just got to be ready for it. You've got to be a tougher man."
Doubled-up Aug. 5, 2012, at Fenway Park off the Red Sox' Jarrod Saltalamacchia. "It was like a changeup and [Saltalamacchia] kind of reached out and just took it. It was kind of curving over my head and I caught it. I looked back and they thought it was way over my head. I know the runner on second was like halfway home, so I just easily threw it back. Off the bat, I thought it was over my head, but I got a chance to catch up to it. I just try to help out my team with defense. Defense helps win championships. I just go out there and try to save some runs and help out my pitching. You never know when it's going to help you win a game."
Did we miss anything? Revere recalled this last catch.
Diving catch June 17, 2012, at Target Field off the Brewers' Norichika Aoki. "There was one against the Brewers in extra innings. I caught it on the warning track. That could have helped them win the game and everything. That was kind of big. We eventually won that game."
Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.