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Yankees Sign Ben Francisco to Minor League Deal to Compete for Outfield Spot

Watch out Zoilo Almonte, Melky Mesa, and Ronnier Mustelier: another veteran is coming for the spot you want.


After being released by the Cleveland Indians this morning, Ben Francisco didn't have to wait long to find a new job. He'll be another semi-warm body competing for the open spot in the outfield until Curtis Granderson returns from his broken forearm. It seemed like, to this point, that the Yankees might actually be giving kids like Zoilo Almonte, Melky Mesa, and Ronnier Mustelier a real shot to win a spot on the Opening Day roster, but they could only deny their quest for more veteran presence for so long.

Francisco hit .240/.285/.385 in 82 games for three different teams in 2012. His 94 wRC+ against right-handers last year is a pretty big step up over his 70 wRC+ off lefties, but his career numbers are less lopsided. Hopefully his signing will represent just another guy vying for a spot that the best player will win instead of a way for the Yankees to just give the job to a guy who has been around longer. Francisco will be with the team as soon as tomorrow.