Revs Sign Tabata, Cleary Jr., Severino
The York Revolution have signed Major League veteran outfielder Jose Tabata, outfielder Delta Cleary Jr., and right-handed pitcher Dominic Severino to contracts for the 2018 season. The signings were announced by manager Mark Mason during Tuesday night’s airing of “Revs Hot Stove Weekly presented by Shipley Energy” on SportsRadio 1350 WOYK.
Tabata has accumulated 509 games played in the Majors over six seasons, all with the Pittsburgh Pirates. The right-handed hitter was the No. 2 prospect with the New York Yankees when he was dealt to Pittsburgh in a six-player deal before the trade deadline in 2008. Tabata made his big league debut with the Pirates two seasons later, batting .299 and finishing eighth in National League Rookie of the Year voting. Defensively, he led all N.L. left fielders in the range factor fielding metric that season. The Venezuela native is a lifetime .275 hitter in the big leagues with 17 home runs, 81 doubles, 15 triples, and 47 stolen bases. Tabata played at the Triple-A level in the Pirates and Los Angeles Dodgers organizations in 2015 and 2016, and returns to the United States after playing in the Venezuelan Winter League the last two off seasons.
“He’s looking for an opportunity to get back to the big leagues and wants to come here to show what he can do,” said Mason. “We’re excited to get him. It’ll be a good opportunity for him to showcase what he can do.”
Cleary Jr. joins the Revs after playing for the Long Island Ducks in the Atlantic League over the previous three seasons. The switch-hitter is a career .297 hitter in the Atlantic League with 91 stolen bases. His totals include a .308 clip (3rd in league) with 34 steals (tied for 2nd) in 2015, and a .321 average (3rd) with 32 stolen bases (5th) in 2016. Defensively, he led all Atlantic League qualifying outfielders with a .991 fielding percentage, committing just two errors in 215 total chances in 2016. Last season, Cleary Jr. batted .265 with 25 steals and led the league with 14 sacrifice bunts after totaling 23 and 13 sacrifices, respectively, in his previous two years. Prior to the Atlantic League, the Jonesboro, AR, native spent seven seasons in the Colorado Rockies organization, reaching as high as Triple-A, and also played at Double-A Harrisburg in the Washington Nationals farm system. Cleary Jr. was originally drafted by the Rockies in the 37th round of the 2008 amateur draft.
“He’s a really good fit for us,” said Mason. “He’s a switch-hitter that can fly, can play all three outfield positions, dynamite center fielder, doesn’t strike out much. We can use him at the top of the lineup.”
Severino’s rights were acquired from Bridgeport in the second round of the player dispersal draft last fall. The 24-year-old dazzled in three starts late in the season after joining the Bluefish from the Empire League, going 1-0 with a 1.23 ERA, allowing just two runs over 14.2 innings while striking out 19 compared to just three walks. The Revs ran up against Severino in his Atlantic League debut on September 3 and were shut down by the righty, who held York’s potent offense to three hits over four shutout innings, striking out seven. The Cheshire, CT, native began his pro career after pitching at Central Connecticut State University.
“I was impressed with his poise,” remarked Mason. “He handled us really well, threw a lot of strikes, had an idea of what he was doing out there as far as setting up hitters. He’s a young guy, so there’s a lot of upside, and I think (pitching coach) Paul Fletcher can help him get even better as we go into this season.”
The Revs now have nine players under contract for the 2018 season, and will announce additional player signings during the next episode of “Revs Hot Stove Weekly presented by Shipley Energy”, Tuesday, February 27, at 6:30 p.m., airing immediately after “The Baltimore Baseball Show with Dan Connolly” on SportsRadio 1350 WOYK and http://www.woyk1350.com.