The hot corner of the Philadelphia Phillies is overcrowded with top prospects, the most recent of which is power, right-handed bat, Maikel Franco. Franco will have his chance this spring to compete with projected starter, Cody Asche, for a spot with the major league club. Although he’s only spent a short time with the AA, Reading Fightin Phils, Franco could pose a great debate and decision for new Phillies’ manager Ryan Sandberg come the end of spring, based on his power numbers and the lack of righty bats the Phils can count on.
Franco could find a way to fit with Philadelphia come decision day based on the fact that he can provide an option at both third and first. With the recent history of the Phillies and their injury prone elders, Franco could see a drastic change in his franchise worth in 2014. Already projected as one of the top up and coming players, the opportunity to shine in spring training and end up a part of the final roster are definite possibilities.
Realistically, chances are that Franco will most likely begin the season seeing some more time in the minors, but with the Phillies in win-now or sell mode, he’ll likely become a part of the picture before the end of the 2014 season. Any bevy of scenarios could change his outlook though.
Having seen time at first base over the past season, and looking at Ryan Howard making an attempt to return from injury, there’s still no indication of just how successful it’ll be. In addition, Asche has yet to prove that he can be the everyday third baseman. If Franco comes out and proves his worth during his chances this spring, the Phillies could very likely end up with a platoon situation at the hot corner.
Only time will tell how quickly Franco will make his impact at the major league level, but with the Phillies aging quickly, plan on seeing him in pinstripes sooner rather than later.