April 17, 2012; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves third basemanJuan Francisco
(25) gets tagged out at home by Kansas City Royals catcherSalvador Perez
(13) in the seventh inning at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports
Late last night the Atlanta Braves called up left-handed pitcher Alex Wood, and in response designated Juan Francisco for assignment. This means that general manager Frank Wren, has ten days to try and trade Francisco. If he fails to trade him by that point, he will go to waivers and other teams can pick him up. If he miraculously gets through waivers, he can either accept an assignment to Triple-A Gwinnett, or become a free agent.
As of right now, Frank Wren is in talks with several teams and it seems like he will be able to get something in return for Francisco–hopefully pitching depth. Per, Mark Bowman:
"Early indications are that the Braves will be able to trade the left-handed slugger within the next few days.“We’ve got discussions going with a number of different clubs,” general manager Frank Wren said. “I think we’ll be able to trade him and get something back. I think it’s best for us, and for Juan, that he’ll get an opportunity to go to the big leagues with somebody else.”"
Francisco definitely has the ability to help another club, and probably start for several different teams. Because of the success Chris Johnson has had so far this season, management felt that Francisco was expendable. Personally, the move is surprising to me–I feel like Reed Johnson was the most expendable player on the roster. However, Francisco definitely has more value, due to his power and age.
Alex Wood has the potential to be a solid major league starting pitcher in the future, and is a solid option for bullpen relief at the moment. In Double-A this year, Wood threw 57 innings and posted a 9.00 K/9, 2.37 BB/9, and 1.26 ERA. He was drafted by the Braves in the second round of the 2012 MLB Draft.