KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Former Royal Jeff Francoeur signed a minor-league contract with the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday, which may make some fans wonder why the Royals simply didn’t option Francoeur to Triple-A Omaha as insurance to the possibility of a major injury to one of their big-league outfielders.
Francoeur, though, was a five-plus years player in terms of service time, meaning the Royals would have needed his consent to be optioned.
Francoeur indicated several weeks ago he would not have given consent, and Royals general manager Dayton Moore said by phone Tuesday that they did not ask Francoeur for consent before designating him for assignment in late June.
“That was not part of our decision process,” Moore said.
It also is no secret the Royals weren’t likely to re-sign Francoeur for 2014, making it more likely Francoeur would take a minor-league assignment with another team in hopes of finding his way back to the big leagues this season and working toward a future big-league contract.
The Royals remain on the hook for the majority of Francouer’s $6.75 million contract for 2013. The Giants will pay only a pro-rated portion of the major-league minimum ($480,000).
Francoeur is expected to join the Giants’ Triple-A team in Fresno, Calif., this week.
“Jeff contributed to the Kansas City Royals and to the Kansas City community,” Moore said. “I mean that. We wish him nothing but the best.”
You can follow Jeffrey Flanagan on Twitter at @jflanagankc or email him at email@example.com