They shipped right-hander Vance Worley and right-handed pitching prospect Trevor May to the Minnesota Twins on Thursday morning for outfielder Ben Revere, who will be the team's Opening Day center fielder. It could be just the first domino to fall for the Phils in the coming days. They are waiting for Rangers infielder Michael Young to accept a trade to Philadelphia, according to a source. They also will continue their pursuit of a right-handed power-hitting corner outfielder, plus a starting pitcher to fill Worley's spot in the rotation.
The Phillies hope they are getting a younger, cheaper version of Michael Bourn.
"I think he's a similar type of player," general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said. "He doesn't have much power. He's much more of a singles hitter. He's not going to drive the ball consistently. But the defense and speed were important to us, particularly at that position. We felt like this would be a good, solid, controllable acquisition for us."
Revere, 24, is a career .278 hitter with a .319 on-base percentage, a .323 slugging percentage and a .642 OPS in 989 career at-bats. Bourn had a .263 batting average with .328/.351/.678 splits in 1,192 at-bats early in his career from 2007-09.
Bourn has more speed and is more accomplished defensively, but Revere, who has never homered in the Majors, costs tens of millions of dollars less and cannot become a free agent until after the 2017 season.
Revere came at a high price. The Phillies lose Worley, who was their fourth or fifth starter. They also lost May, who was listed as their No. 2 overall prospect. The Phils will try to sign a veteran starter to replace Worley, although Amaro said some of the team's young pitchers like Tyler Cloyd will get a chance to win a job in Spring Training.
"We may be looking for some outside help for the rotation, if it makes some sense," Amaro said.
May struggled a bit last season with Double-A Reading, but he remains loaded with talent and potential. The Phillies felt they could move him because of the development of other pitchers in the organization.
"We were dealing from what we considered a position of strength," Amaro said. "We've added some talent as far as starting pitching is concerned toward the top with Ethan Martin, Jonathan Pettibone, Adam Morgan and some others. We felt comfortable moving them. The price of doing business right now to acquire players and free agents ... we just felt getting a controllable player with quite a bit of upside, we felt like he was a good fit for us."
Revere, who will likely hit eighth in Philadelphia's lineup, is not eligible for salary arbitration, so his 2013 salary will be minimal. That is important in regards to the '13 payroll.
"We still have a great deal of flexibility," Amaro said.
That means the Phils will continue to pursue a right-handed power-hitting corner outfielder. They like Cody Ross, who remains a free agent. They also could pursue a trade for outfielders like Alfonso Soriano, Michael Cuddyer and Jason Kubel. They have liked each of those players in the past, so they are worth watching.
"Based on what's available, they did all right," one high-ranking American League executive said about the Revere trade. "He's a solid average player. That's how I look at him. He's above average defensively. He can run. My biggest question, considering his size [5-foot-9, 170 pounds], is if he can play 145, 150 games. But he puts the ball in play better than I thought he would."
Deals done: The Phillies acquired Revere from the Twins for Worley and May.
Rule 5 Draft activity: Philadelphia selected center fielder Ender Inciarte from the Arizona Diamondbacks. Inciarte, 22, provides depth at a position that sorely needs it. He split last season with Class A South Bend and Visalia, where he hit a combined .307 with 28 doubles, 10 triples, 47 RBIs, 82 runs scored and 46 stolen bases.
"We like the defensive ability," pro scouting director Mike Ondo said. "We think he's an above-average defender in center field, and an above-average runner. The reports we get are that he has the instincts to play the game and is a guy we can trust to run out there to play defense late."
Goals accomplished: Check center field off the list.
Unfinished business: The Phillies could have Young before the end of the weekend. They still need a right-handed corner outfielder with some pop. The fact Revere costs next to nothing means the Phils have financial flexibility to pursue another outfielder. Ross is available. They also could try to swing another trade. They also will pursue a starting pitcher to fill Worley's spot in the rotation.
Team's bottom line: "Ben is an outstanding, young, controllable center fielder who fits nicely with our club." -- Amaro
Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less