After a disappointing first half to the Atlantic League season, the York Revolution is battling for the top spot in the Freedom Division second half.
The Revs' hopes of winning a second-half championship, however, got a little more difficult on Wednesday morning, when the team announced that the contract of infielder Angel Franco has been purchased by the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Franco becomes the third Revs player and second infielder to sign with a major league organization since spring training, joining shortstop Josh Wilson (Texas Rangers) and lefty reliever Jarret Martin (San Francisco Giants).
The Revs entered Wednesday's action at 6-6 in the second, a half game out of first place in the Freedom Division. York was 28-42 in the first half, finishing last in the Freedom Division.
Franco has been a productive part of the Revs' lineup this season, batting .274 in 66 games played. He's had four separate six-game hitting streaks during the course of the year. Franco tallied 71 hits, 36 runs scored, 12 doubles, four home runs and 21 RBIs.
Franco also provided the Revs with a steady glove up the middle, making 33 starts at shortstop and 32 more at second base, helping lead a York defense that is tied for second in the Atlantic League in fielding percentage. Franco strung together a 29-game errorless streak at one point.
Despite losing a productive player, York manager Mark Mason was pleased that Franco was getting another opportunity in affiliated baseball.
“We’re extremely happy for Angel,” Mason said in a news release. “He approached the game with great professionalism and a great work ethic every day and put himself in position for this opportunity. The Diamondbacks organization is getting a quality ballplayer and a quality individual.”
Franco posted back-to-back three-hit games for the Revs, May 20-21, and tallied three consecutive three-hit games from June 21-23, including a 3-for-5 performance with a home run and two doubles. He scored the winning run in a walk-off victory over the Lancaster Barnstormers in a suspended game from June 23, completed on June 25.
The 27-year-old switch hitter is in his ninth pro season, having spent each of his previous eight years in the Kansas City Royals organization, playing in a combined 100 games at the Triple-A level with Omaha the past two years. He was a Texas League All-Star at the Double-A level during the 2015 season.
The Bani, Dominican Republic, native becomes the 38th player in Revolution history to sign with a major league organization during the season and the second to do so with the Diamondbacks (RHP Mike DeMark, 2011).