I’ve always been of a mind that Juan Francisco was pretty heavily overrated by the Reds organization. I love his power, but Francisco has always seemed like Wily Mo Pena Lite.
The Reds organization has seemed to have a pretty high opinion of the big guy and, let’s be honest, they know more than I do. For the first time, however, there seems to be trouble in paradise:
It sounds as if the Reds are running out of patience with third baseman Juan Francisco.
Francisco (strained calf) made his spring debut Tuesday, flying out in a pinch-hit at-bat.
Obviously, he’s way behind. Too far to catch up?
“He’s got enough time,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “But he’s behind. Part of that is if he had rehabbed properly in the wintertime. Part of that is came into camp one of the few guys overweight.”
“The guys that came in ready, I can’t shelve them because he didn’t (come in ready).”
Francisco is 10 to 12 pounds overweight. It was mentioned that it is hard to lose weight when you can’t run.
“Then you got to stop eating,” Baker said.
I’d love to see this little rift open the door for Todd Frazier to make this team. Frazier could help this team in so many different ways; it just makes too much sense.
On the other hand, Francisco swings a left-handed bat, so he still has the inside edge, I’m guessing. The situation bears watching.
Blame Chad for creating this mess.
Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, “The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds” is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad’s musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine.
You can email Chad at firstname.lastname@example.org.