Phillies third base prospect Maikel Franco hit for the cycle in his first four at-bats in tonight’s home game against the Syracuse Chiefs. Franco doubled in the first inning, tripled in the third, singled in the fourth, and hit a solo home run to center field to complete the cycle.
Franco, 21, was a consensus top-100 prospect entering the 2014 season and represented the Phillies at the 2014 Futures Game at Target Field in Minnesota in July. He struggled to begin the season, but has hit well since the start of July. In his last 190 plate appearances, Franco has hit eight home runs, knocked in 37 runs, and posted a .306/.323/.572 slash line.
The Phillies are likely to bring Franco up at some point in September after rosters expand. He’ll compete with Cody Asche for the starting job at third base in March.
Mets starter Jon Niese left his start Tuesday night against the Cardinals due to left knee pain.
Niese walked two and gave up an RBI single before leaving with a trainer with one out in the bottom of the first inning. He was eventually charged with three earned runs. Robert Gsellman, just up from Las Vegas, took over, making his major league debut under unexpected circumstances.
Niese, who has not pitched well at all since coming over in a trade with the Pirates, is likely to be placed on the disabled list after the game or before tomorrow’s game.
Mark Trumbo still has many chances to hit a home run tonight — it’s only been an inning or so in the Nats-Orioles game — but his weird home run streak is over.
Coming into tonight’s game, Trumbo’s last seven hits had been homers. The all-time record had been 11, set by Mark McGwire back in 2001. The last time Trumbo got a hit that wasn’t a dong was back on August 11. Later in that game, however, he hit a grand slam. After that he went 6 for his next 34, with all those safeties dingers.
But that’s over now. In the first inning tonight he drove in a run with a two-out single. Then he was thrown out trying to stretch it to two. Good job on the RBIs, Mark. Bad job on the base running. Judgment withheld on the homer streak because, really, that’s just kind of weird and cool.