When Ben Revere was acquired by the Phillies last December, the early reports were the same.
“A young Juan Pierre,” was the phrase that baseball pundits used.
So who better to access Revere’s struggles with the Phillies than Pierre?
“It’s way too early to worry about Ben Revere,” said Pierre, who was in town Thursday as a member of the Miami Marlins. “He’ll come around.”
Pierre, who impressed with the Phillies in 2012 with his ability to get on base and tireless work ethic, is confident that Revere — hitting just .200, with a .222 slugging percentage — will come around. Revere, who has only five infield hits, has had an inability to hit the ball to the outfield.
“Give him a break,” Pierre said. “He’s changing leagues and that’s difficult. I know when I went from the National League to the American League, I hit .200 for the first two months.”
So, yes, Revere mirrors Pierre. If that remains so, expect the young center fielder to break out of his funk.
“I know I’ll be fine,” Revere said. “I have to make some adjustments. I know I can hit.”
Charlie Manuel is confident Revere can get it going.
“He hit (.294) last year,” Manuel said. “I think he can pick it up.”
But Revere may need some time to get there. He jammed his right hand Wednesday night in Cleveland and needed X-rays on his hand.
“It doesn’t feel bad,” Revere said. “We’ll see. I think I’ll be fine. It’s early and it’s a long season.”
Pierre, who admires Revere’s breathtaking speed, said to watch him acclimate.
“When I first saw this cat, running, I noticed how fast he is,” Pierre said. “I talked to him when I was with the White Sox and when he was with the Twins. He’s going to help this team. There’s no doubt about it. He needs to make adjustments and get into a groove.
“The tough part, though, is that there is no grace period in Philadelphia. The fans here let you know how they feel and that’s fine. I was just fortunate when I played here. I got off to a good start and had a good year.”
Pierre said that 2012 was one of the best times of his lengthy career.
“The organization was great,” Pierre said. “The fans were really receptive of me. That was nice because I was on the other side of it when I was with the Marlins for the first time. I accept that. They want to win in Philadelphia. I respect that.”
And Pierre thinks they can be victorious with Revere.
“I bet halfway through the season that Revere wins them over,” Pierre said. “The Phillies will be a tough team in the East. Just watch.”