The Red Sox claimed third baseman/first baseman Juan Francisco off waivers from the Toronto Blue Jays on Wednesday.
Francisco could serve as insurance in the event Boston doesn’t land a third baseman this offseason. The 27-year-old hit .220 with 16 homers, 43 RBIs and a .747 OPS in 320 plate appearances over 106 games with the Blue Jays in 2014. He drilled a career-high 18 homers in 385 plate appearances spanning 124 games split between the Atlanta Braves and Milwaukee Brewers in 2013.
Francisco, a left-handed hitter, is far better against right-handed pitching than left-handed pitching, meaning he’ll likely serve as a platoon player/pinch-hit option if he stays with Boston. Francisco is a .248 hitter with a .786 OPS in 941 career plate appearances against righties. He’s a .159 hitter with a .423 OPS in 150 career plate appearances versus lefties.
Francisco is arbitration-eligible, and MLB Trade Rumors projects he could earn $2.2 million in 2015. His spot — or lack thereof — on Boston’s roster could be predicated on what the club does in free agency and/or the trade market in the coming weeks.
Thumbnail photo via Dan Hamilton/USA TODAY Sports Images
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