Although he’s still just 25 years old, this may be a make-or-break season in Philadelphia for Franco, who has batted an underwhelming .248/.301/.428 (91 wRC+) through 1,663 plate appearances since debuting in 2014. Franco was outstanding as a rookie in 2015, when he hit .280/.343/.497 (129 wRC+) across 335 PAs and looked like a long-term core piece for Philly. He struggled during the two ensuing seasons, however, and is now fighting to stay relevant for a Phillies team that may have a replacement on hand in 23-year-old infielder/outfielder Scott Kingery, whom they signed to a long-term contract last month. Kingery landed his deal before ever logging a major league at-bat, demonstrating the confidence the Phillies have in him.
Franco, to his credit, has responded to the pressure in 2018, albeit over just 18 PAs. He has thus far slashed .313/.318/.813 (213 wRC+), including a grand slam on Saturday. Regardless of whether he stays with the Phillies, he’s controllable via arbitration through the 2021 campaign. Franco’s on a $2.95MM salary this season.