Ben Francisco got the first hit by an opponent at the new Yankee Stadium with Cleveland and played against the Yankees in the 2009 World Series with Philadelphia. "I feel they know me pretty well," Francisco said. "I’ve got a good chance to compete for a job." The right-handed hitting outfielder didn’t have that opportunity after the Indians signed Nick Swisher and Michael Bourn. Granted his release from Cleveland, Francisco arrived in Yankees camp Tuesday after being signed to a minor league deal. Francisco, 31, had been on the Yanks’ winter radar. Now, he’s challenging Matt Diaz and Juan Rivera for playing time against lefties as a fourth outfielder. Francisco should be in the lineup tonight versus Phillies starter Cliff Lee. Rivera also is getting time at first base. "Last year was kind of a rough year," said Francisco, who was traded twice and went on the disabled list with a hamstring strain. He hit a combined .240 with four homers and 15 RBI in 192 at-bats for the Blue Jays, Astros and Rays. But he was batting .400 (8-for-20) with six doubles for Cleveland at the time of his release. "Hopefully, I’ll be here for a while."
Ben Francisco happy to be a Yankee
Bergen Record | Mar 13