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Weiss sees role for Francis despite demotion

MLB.com

WASHINGTON -- Rockies manager Walt Weiss said he believed veteran left-hander Jeff Francis could still return to be a factor in the team's season.

Nevertheless, the Rockies announced Thursday that Francis had accepted an option to Triple-A Colorado Springs. The Rockies needed to make room on the active roster for Thursday night's starting pitcher, Roy Oswalt. To clear the required spot on the 40-man Major League roster, the Rockies outrighted right-hander Chris Volstad to Colorado Springs. Volstad had been optioned there.

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WASHINGTON -- Rockies manager Walt Weiss said he believed veteran left-hander Jeff Francis could still return to be a factor in the team's season.

Nevertheless, the Rockies announced Thursday that Francis had accepted an option to Triple-A Colorado Springs. The Rockies needed to make room on the active roster for Thursday night's starting pitcher, Roy Oswalt. To clear the required spot on the 40-man Major League roster, the Rockies outrighted right-hander Chris Volstad to Colorado Springs. Volstad had been optioned there.

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"I'm glad Jeff is still with us," Weiss said. "He's meant so much to this organization. At some point, Jeff's going to be able to help us again."

Francis was 2-5 with a 6.58 ERA in 11 starts with the Rockies.

Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, and follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb.

Colorado Rockies, Jeff Francis, Chris Volstad