Revs Bolster Bullpen, Lineup’s Health Improves
The York Revolution have significantly improved the team’s depth heading into Tuesday night’s opener against the Somerset Patriots, as Jose Cuevas and Melky Mesa have both been activated from the Disabled List and are in the starting lineup. The Revs also added right-handed pitchers Grant Sides and Tyler Cravy over the weekend.
Cuevas has been sidelined since May 2 when he suffered an ankle sprain on an awkward step at first base, legging out an infield hit while attempting to avoid a collision at the bag. Mesa has been sidelined since April 28 when he suffered a hamstring injury in the Revs’ third game of the season, and his first game played. Both players were brought in during the offseason with expectations of being major parts of the lineup, so their health could be the biggest possible boost to an offense that has batted just .231 so far despite the team being 8-7. One can’t help but remember last season when Alonzo Harris went down early in the year with an oblique strain and had to miss an even longer period of time before his return obviously gave the Revs offense more than a nudge in the right direction. No one would predict any player to have the type of year that Harris did in 2017, but the point is that perhaps the greatest help to this offense has been on the DL the past couple of weeks and is now ready to contribute again. Jose Tabata remains inactive, back home for personal reasons, while Ross Detwiler was made inactive until his next start to make room on the active roster for Cuevas and Mesa, which is now at its max of 27 active players.
Sides made his season debut on Sunday with a perfect inning, and will slot into the back end of the bullpen where he was a critical piece of the puzzle during the Revs’ championship run last year. It could have easily been a three-way share for playoff MVP honors in York, as Sides set a club playoff record by earning three wins, and notched the save in the championship clincher after earning the win in each of the first two games of the Championship Series. He became the third pitcher in Atlantic League history to total three wins in a single postseason.
The hard-throwing 6’4 righty was acquired from Kansas City (American Association) for a player to be named later on September 11, 2017. The 28-year-old was a standout reliever in the American Association, posting a 2.40 ERA and striking out 71 batters over 45 appearances, limiting opponents to only 32 hits in 48.2 innings. Sides began the 2017 season in the Diamondbacks system at Double-A Jackson and Triple-A Reno, after spending the first six seasons of his pro career in the Cleveland Indians organization, including three years at Double-A Akron. He was a 12th round pick of the Indians out of Samford University in 2011, and enters this season with a lifetime 3.33 ERA, all as a reliever.
Cravy appeared in 34 Major League games (9 starts) for the Milwaukee Brewers between 2015-16 with solid overall numbers: a 4.56 ERA, only 68 hits allowed in 71.0 innings, and 57 strikeouts compared to 34 walks. That includes 20 appearances (2 starts) in 2016 in which he posted a 2.86 ERA. The 28-year-old righty was a 17th round draft pick of Milwaukee in 2009. Cravy is 44-37 with a 4.14 ERA in his minor league career (202 appearances, 77 starts) including a full season at Triple-A Colorado Springs last year, after splitting time between Triple-A and the big leagues the previous two years.