The Philadelphia Phillies made a surprising roster move prior to their game on Sunday. With the team’s plethora of outfielders, the Phils have decided to option Maikel Franco to Triple-A. The move allows Scott Kingery to move to the hot corner on a full-time basis.
The #Phillies have optioned Maikel Franco to Triple-A. Brad Miller has been reinstated from 10-day IL.
— Todd Zolecki (@ToddZolecki) August 4, 2019
According to Marcus Hayes of the Philadelphia Inquirer, Franco was escorted out of the clubhouse and had no interest in speaking about his demotion.
Zolecki went on to report that the Phillies don’t think Franco profiles well as a bench player. Third base is the only position Franco can play, so keeping Brad Miller and Sean Rodriguez makes sense from a versatility standpoint.
Franco, 26, started the season off hot during the Phillies’ first 10 games but has since come back to earth in a big way. Although he has the element of power over both Miller and Rodriguez, Franco’s .198 average against lefties makes him less of an option off the bench.
Overall this season, Franco slashed .231/.296/.405 with 15 home runs, 47 RBIs and 44 runs scored. Sean Rodriguez and Brad Miller have a combined 19 home runs over the past two seasons.
While Franco’s demotion is certainly a disappointment to him, he could very well return this season if he works on some things at the plate in Lehigh Valley.