In 397 Minor League games, Francisco has logged five of them in left field. In winter ball with the Cibao Gigantes, Francisco played 36 games at third base and 18 in left field."I don't care. I know I can play both positions -- left field or third base," Francisco said. "It's not a problem as long as I can play and contribute every day."
In 131 games combined at Double-A Carolina and Triple-A Louisville in 2009, Francisco batted .295 with 27 homers and 93 RBIs. During his September callup to the Majors, he batted .429 (9-for-21) with one homer and seven RBIs in 14 games. With 25 homers in low Class A in 2007 and 23 homers at high Class A ball in '08, power has always been part of his game.The negative aspect of Francisco's game has always been an alarming strikeout rate. He walked just 24 times in the Minors last season compared to 115 strikeouts. Since beginning in the organization in 2005, he's walked 86 times, with 468 strikeouts. "We still have to work on him a little bit because he's extremely aggressive," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "We have to work on him as far as pitch selection. [Opposing pitchers] are starting to go out of the [strike] zone on him. You get a reputation and that's what they're going to do. I'm very confident he'll make the adjustment." "I am working on all aspects of the game and, of course, that's one of my main goals," Francisco said of reducing strikeouts. "Hopefully I can cut down on that as well."
Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less