|With the non-tender deadline approaching, the Phillies eliminated a tough roster decision by trading outfielder Ben Francisco to the Blue Jays minor league lefty reliever Frank Gailey.
Francisco spent the majority of the last three seasons as a reserve outfielder for the Phillies. While he batted just .259/.332/.420 in 526 at-bats for Philadelphia, Francisco will be remembered for his pinch-hit, game-winning home run in Game Three of the 2011 National League Division Series against the Cardinals. This year, he started just 10 games after the all-star break, and his presence became redundant with the emergence of John Mayberry Jr. and the recent signing of veteran Lance Nix. One-time top prospect Dominic Brown also looms in Triple-A.
The Blue Jays designated righty reliever Jesse Chavez for assignment to make room on the 40-man for Francisco. He provides a righty-hitting alternative to Toronto’s Eric Thames and Travis Snider in left field.
|Frank Gailey, lhp
Born: Nov. 18, 1985 in Philadelphia.
Ht.: 5-9. Wt.: 190. Bats: L. Throws: L.
School: West Chester (Pa.).
Career Transactions: Selected by Blue Jays in 23rd round of 2007 draft, signed June 13, 2007.
In addition to increased roster flexibility, the Phillies also received Gailey, a 26-year-old Philadelphia native. His best pitch is a plus changeup that enables his high-80s fastball to play up. While he lacks overpowering stuff, Gailey gets by with the deception and angle his low three-quarters arm slot creates. Gailey struggled to retire all batter types at Double-A, but he held high Class A lefthanded batters to a .131/.172/.148 line while with Dunedin in 2011.
|Blue Jays Acquire|
|Ben Francisco, rf/lf
Age: 30. Bats: R. Remaining Commitment: Arbitration eligible for the 2012-2013 seasons ($1.175 million salary in 2011).
Contract details courtesy of Cot’s Baseball Contracts.