Tuesday, June 19, 2012

For love of the glove: Ben Revere, right fielder

Ben Revere: His .750
OPS is is higher than
those of Ryan Doumit
and Denard Span.
Ben Revere made three notable plays in the field Sunday, including one of his "how-did-he-outrun-that-ball" efforts on the warning track.

Defense -- specifically range -- is a major part of his value to the team. This is true even in right field, the outfield spot at which Revere's subpar throwing arm is most noticable.

Still, having two legit center fielders out there is a plus for the pitching staff, and I thought it worthwhile to take an early read on Revere's defensive metrics in right field.

Emphasis on early: Revere didn't open the season in the lineup and spent some time in the minors before being recalled. He has 218 innings in right field; that's less than half the innings of the season.

Still, by Baseball Info Systems' plus-minus and runs saved metrics, Revere's raw numbers compare quite well to even the best of the American League's full-time right fielders.

Revere, as of the figures I consulted online Monday, is +8 in plus-minus, +3 in runs saved. These are good figures, especially considering the limited innings, but neither is close to leading the AL's right fielders. Ichiro Suzuki of Seattle, who has played 595 innings, is +15 and +13. Tampa Bay's Ben Zobrist, who has just 329 innings in right (he plays multiple positions), is +11, +8.

Worth noting: Trevor Plouffe and Darin Mastroanni have a combined 187 innings in right field (less than Revere), and they are a combined +5 and +3. Ryan Doumit, meanwhile, is -4, -2 in 49 innings, which I'm sure didn't escape Ron Gardenhire's attention. Doumit hasn't played right field since May 4.

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