Francoeur signed to be Royals’ right fielder

The Royals’ search for a right-handed-hitting outfielder with power has led them to Jeff Francoeur.

Francoeur, a free agent, was signed by the Royals on Wednesday at the Winter Meetings to a one-year contract for $2.5 million with a mutual option for 2012 at $4 million. Francoeur last played with the Texas Rangers in the World Series.

Manager Ned Yost said that Francoeur will be the Royals’ regular right fielder and bat somewhere in the middle of the lineup, exact spot to be determined.

The chance to play every day with the Royals rather than be in a platoon situation elsewhere appealed to Francoeur.

“I do want to play every day, I’m not the best guy to sit on the bench,” he said by phone. “I have ants in my pants.”

General manager Dayton Moore apparently moved quickly to sign Francoeur who reportedly was the target of several teams, notably the Philadelphia Phillies.

Dick Kaegel.

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