Top 4 former Phillies players who are still unsigned

Cole Hamels #35 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)
Cole Hamels #35 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images) /
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Maikel Franco #7 of the Philadelphia Phillies (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /

2. Maikel Franco

After six seasons with the Phillies from 2014-19, third baseman Maikel Franco thrived in his first taste of American League action this past season with the Kansas City Royals. Playing in all 60 games, he slashed .278/.321/.457 with 16 doubles, eight home runs, and 38 RBI.

During his final season in red pinstripes in 2019, Franco played in 123 games and had just one more double (17) than he would collect with the Royals a year later. He also slashed a much-worse .234/.297/.409.

Despite the successful bounce-back year, the Royals non-tendered Franco in early December, making him a free-agent. It was the second straight offseason that a team non-tendered the Dominican Republic native, with the Phillies doing the same after the 2019 season.

This past Friday, MLB Network’s Jon Heyman reported that the free-agent market for the 28-year-old is beginning to “heat up,” with the Baltimore Orioles among the teams reportedly interested in him. Franco has 16 career plate appearances at Oriole Park at Camden Yards, collecting only two singles and a home run, along with three RBI, while slashing .188/.188/.375.

With the Phillies having both Alec Bohm and Rhys Hoskins manning corner infield positions, there is no longer a fit for Franco to play for the Phillies. And, even if they considered bringing him back for bench depth, Brad Miller, whoever loses out the starting center field job, backup catcher Andrew Knapp, and others, are already filling out the few spots there as well.