Saturday, November 28, 2015

Francisco traded to Toronto

Instead of tendering Ben Francisco a contract, the Phillies have traded the outfielder to Toronto for minor-league lefthander Frank Gailey.

Francisco traded to Toronto

Ben Francisco has been traded to the Blue Jays. (H. Rumph Jr./AP)
Ben Francisco has been traded to the Blue Jays. (H. Rumph Jr./AP)

Instead of tendering Ben Francisco a contract, the Phillies have traded the outfielder to Toronto for minor-league lefthander Frank Gailey.

Francisco, 30, made $1.18 million in 2011 and was due a raise through the arbitration process. He likely would have made less than $2 million in 2012.

He began 2011 as the team's starting right fielder but was on the bench by the end of May. His defining moment as a Phillie will be the pinch-hit, three-run home run in Game 3 of the National League division series against the Cardinals.

Ultimately, the Phillies decided there wasn't space for Francisco, who was used sparingly on Charlie Manuel's bench. That unit has undergone a massive overhaul this winter with the additions of Jim Thome, Ty Wigginton and Laynce Nix. With backup catcher Brian Schneider re-signed and Wilson Valdez likely to fill another spot, the bench is full. They will need another position player while Ryan Howard recovers from left Achilles surgery, but that will not be Francisco.

More coverage
Career Stats: Ben Francisco
Phillies Zone: Will Phils tender Kendrick, Valdez?
Rollins looking more likely to return
Worley eager to improve his game
Buy 2012 Phillies tickets

Wigginton stands to be the primary righthanded bat off the bench, a role Francisco filled for much of his two-and-a-half seasons in Philadelphia. It's possible Wigginton spends the majority of time at first base in Howard's absence, which could leave Manuel without a righthanded bat off the bench when both Wigginton and John Mayberry Jr. start games.

By most accounts, Michael Cuddyer is no longer an option for the Phillies and the free agent will soon decide between the Twins and Rockies. The Phillies have not seriously considered Josh Willingham, another righthanded bat on the market.

Ruben Amaro Jr. said he had trade discussions with "20 to 25" teams at the winter meetings and could decide to acquire another righthanded bat through those means. The non-tender deadline at midnight Monday could create more free-agent options. (Keep an eye on a player like Ryan Spilborghs, who could be non-tendered by Colorado. The Phillies have liked him before.) Or they could simply stick with the current bats.

Gailey, 26, is a Philadelphia native. He attended Archbishop Carroll and West Chester University. The 5-foot-9 lefty posted a 3.41 ERA across single A and double A in 2011. He's only pitched 30 innings in double A over five minor-league seasons.

The Phillies now have 39 players on their 40-man roster.

Have a question? Send it to Matt Gelb's Mailbag.

We encourage respectful comments but reserve the right to delete anything that doesn't contribute to an engaging dialogue.
Help us moderate this thread by flagging comments that violate our guidelines.

Comment policy: comments are intended to be civil, friendly conversations. Please treat other participants with respect and in a way that you would want to be treated. You are responsible for what you say. And please, stay on topic. If you see an objectionable post, please report it to us using the "Report Abuse" option.

Please note that comments are monitored by staff. We reserve the right at all times to remove any information or materials that are unlawful, threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, pornographic, profane, indecent or otherwise objectionable. Personal attacks, especially on other participants, are not permitted. We reserve the right to permanently block any user who violates these terms and conditions.

Additionally comments that are long, have multiple paragraph breaks, include code, or include hyperlinks may not be posted.

Read 0 comments
comments powered by Disqus
About this blog

The place for up-to-the-minute Phillies coverage from The Inquirer's beat writers and columnists.

Jake Kaplan Inquirer Staff Writer
Bob Brookover Inquirer Columnist
Marc Narducci Inquirer Staff Writer
Matt Breen Inquirer Staff Writer
Latest Videos:
Also on
letter icon Newsletter