Towards the end of last season and increasingly thus far this year, lots of folks, especially the more sabr-inclined (an inclination I share), have started dumping on Revere for having a low ceiling. Indeed, it seems unassailable that a guy with virutally no power will only ever be so valuable. Setting his defense aside, the overriding thing was this (as lots of people pointed out): if Revere didn't boost his slap-sinlges-hitting with significantly better than average command of the strike zone, his ceiling goes from solid (if nowhere near Mauer or Morneau-thus-far-this-season-valuable) to borderline indeed. Most of the talk was a month or so ago, when Revere's OBP and AVG were very close neighbors and he was swinging and missing at levels that, while acceptable for a power guy, were truly troubling indeed for the polar opposite of a power guy.
Anyway, if you're reading this there's a good chance you've noticed Revere's been going pretty darn good lately. But did you notice the crazy improvement he's shown in just the crucial area in which he categorically needs to improve/excel if he's gonna be a serious MLB asset?
He's not walking a ton, but his rate for the year is 8.8%, which is in no way "bad" for a barely 22 year old at AA. And, in his last 8 games, he's walked 6 times, so if there's a trend, it's a good one.
And oh by the way: cool, he hasn't struck out once in those 6 games. Actually, will ya look at this? He hasn't struck out in... wait for it... NINETEEN games on the trot. That's (ahem) an above average performance. 90 or so PAs without a single K. Pretty sexy.
So is Revere gonna be a world-beater? Probably not in the strictest sense. But could he indeed be a very worthwhile number one pick and a long-term MLB starter? If he continues to display the kind of strikezone control he has since his first few weeks in AA baseball (the biggest jump there is), absolutely. Prof. Gardenhire's head might explode trying to decide whether to bat him first or second.
Now I just need to hear some reports of defensive improvement in center field...