Blue Jays sign OF Ben Revere to minor-league deal

The Toronto Blue Jays have gained some outfield depth, signing former Blue Jay Ben Revere to a minor-league deal, according to multiple reports.

The Blue Jays announced Saturday that they’ve signed outfielder Ben Revere to a minor-league contract. The team said that he’ll report to Extended Spring Training on April 30.

This is somewhat of a homecoming for the speedy outfielder, as he played 56 games for the Blue Jays in 2015 after coming over from the Phillies in a deadline deal.

A rapid sparkplug at the top of the powerful lineup, Revere, now 30, slashed .319/.354/.381 for the team, stealing seven bases and adding nine doubles in 226 at-bats.

On January 8, 2016, he was traded to the Washington Nationals in exchange for reliever Drew Storen, who would end up getting traded to Seattle seven months later. In 103 games in Washington, the native of Atlanta, Georgia struggled mightily, posting just a .560 OPS in 375 plate appearances.

In 2017, he appeared in 109 games for the Los Angeles Angels, slashing .275/.308/.344 with 21 stolen bases and 13 doubles. After signing on with the Cincinnati Reds (and then getting released), he returned to the Angels only to get released again in July 2018.

Earlier this year, on February 17, he signed a minor league contract with the Texas Rangers, who then released him from that deal on March 26.

Having not appeared in the big leagues since 2017, his last professional at-bats came with the Triple-A Salt Lake City Bees of the Pacific Coast League (LAA). In 40 games, he posted an OPS of .726 while driving in 18 in 155 at-bats.

While there is no word yet on which level Revere will ultimately be assigned to, it’s likely he’ll head to Triple-A Buffalo to serve as outfield depth. With the team potentially calling up Anthony Alford in the next few months, it could serve them well to have some depth in the upper minors.

In spring training with the Rangers, the former Phillie went 6-for-21 with a double and a run scored, walking once in 12 games.

Known primarily as a plus baserunner with solid range in the field, Revere was a fan favourite despite having only played in Toronto for a brief time. Now, he could get another shot at some major-league at-bats, depending on how things play out. More to come.