A few commenters on our website have expressed their worry about Phillies third baseman Maikel Franco playing winter ball. The thought is that by playing in some games other than the Phillies, Franco will put himself in harm's way. But, for someone like Franco, this is his one opportunity to play for his home country. In his first game, he did not disappoint his local fans.
Jake Kaplan of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports:
Maikel Franco went 2 for 4 with a solo home run in his winter ball debut today with Gigantes del Cibao. Batted 3rd, was DH.— Jake Kaplan (@jakemkaplan) November 23, 2015
Franco joined the team in their 29th game of the Dominican Winter League season.
Franco is not the only Major League player on the Gigantes del Cibao by a longshot. The team includes current and former Major Leaguers Phil Coke, Ernesto Frieri, Philip Humber, Ryan Rowland-Smith, Wilson Betemit, Alexi Casilla, Wilson Betemit, Xavier Scruggs, Matt Joyce, Francisco Peguero, and Moises Sierra.
Phillies pitching prospects Alberto Tirado and Joelys Rodriguez are both on the Gigantes roster.