Earlier today, the Phils have traded outfielder Ben Francisco to the Toronto Blue Jays for minor league reliever Frank Gailey.
Francisco, who was part of the deal with the Indians that originally brought Cliff Lee to the Phils in late July 2009, appeared in 225 games for the Phils from 2009-2011, mainly as their fourth outfielder, although for the first couple of months of 2011 he was the team’s starting right fielder, until he was put back on the bench before the Phils eventually traded with the Astros for Hunter Pence. In those games, he batted .259, having 136 hits including 32 doubles,1 triple and 17 home runs, while knocking in 75 RBIs. He also appeared in 17 post-season games, including the 2009 World Series, where he had an overall batting average of .105, with 2 hits in 19 at-bats, which includes his dramatic three-run home run in the third game of the 2011 National League Divisional Series against the St. Louis Cardinals, which gave the Phils a temporary 2-1 series lead, before finally falling to the eventual World Series champs in five games.
Gailey, a native Philadelphian, had pitched a combine 5-6 with a 3.41 ERA in 45 appearances for Class-A Dunedin and Double-A New Hampshire in the Blue Jays’ farm system. In his minor league career, overall, Gailey is 23-15 with a 2.45 ERA in 175 appearances.
Wish you luck with the Blue Jays, Ben, and thanks for what you did while you was here. Welcome to the organization, Frank. Hope you’ll be able to work your way to the main club.
This post-season, for the first time since 2005, the Phils decided not to make a pick in the Rule 5 draft, as the organization this year did not see anyone in the minor league farm systems that were left unprotected by the other 29 major league teams that they thought would make an immediate impact on the main club.
While they did not make any pick ups, the Phils lost four players in their minor league system, with three of them being taken in the minor league portion of the draft. The four are right-handed pitcher Lenny Castillo, who was picked up by the Cubs from the Phils’ Class A Lakewood team, where, in 2011, he went 4-2 with a 2.54 ERA. Castillo, who was selected in the Major League portion of the draft, will now have to remain on the Cubs’ roster for the 2012 season, unless the Cubs offer him back to the Phils if he doesn’t make it through spring training. In the Minor League phase, the Phils lost left-hander Andrew Loomis to the Orioles, shortstop Travis Mattair to the Reds and catcher Francisco Diaz to the Pirates.
With the Phils not picking up a player through the draft, it means that they will not have to reserve a spot on the regular season 25 man roster for 2012, and I, personally, am glad, since it means that all of the positions can only be filled by those who had either been on the team in the previous season, picked up by the team via free agency or trades during the present off-season or are already in the Phils’ minor league system.
Okay guys, lets see if we can now nail down Jimmy Rollins to a contract.