The right-handed reliever went 1-4 with 17 saves and a 3.55 ERA as the Blue Jays closer last season, his seventh in the big leagues. He had one of his better seasons with the Texas Rangers back in 2009 when he saved 25 games, but his ERA has improved the last two years.
Francisco, a 32-year-old strikeout machine, has appeared in at least 50 games in each of the last five seasons. He has 302 strikeouts since '07, which ranked in the top five among American League relievers. After the All-Star break, he was 7-for-7 in save opportunities for Toronto with a 1.37 ERA, a roll the Mets are hoping continues into next season.
He may be most remembered for an incident in 2004 when an altercation broke out in the stands of Oakland Coliseum during a game between the Rangers and Athletics. Francisco launched a chair, which happened to hit a woman right in the face and break her nose. He was arrested of course. Oddly enough, then-Rangers pitcher Kenny Rogers was also involved in the incident. Ah, those were the days.
New York Mets Believe Jon Rauch Will Make a Great Reliever, Hand Him $3.5 Million
In a move meant to "bolster" their bullpen Tuesday evening, the team signed Rauch to a $3.5 million, one-year deal. This is the Mets' first move of the winter meetings, and for their sake, it's hopefully not their last. Nothing against the 6'-11" pitcher other than the fact that he's absolutely terrible and looks exactly like a crackhead.
The 33-year-old right-hander, who began last season as the Toronto Blue Jays closer, posted a 4.85 ERA in 53 relief appearances with five blown saves in 16 opportunities.