We report a new route to mitigate focal-ratio degradation (FRD) in multimode optical fiber links. Our approach uses a custom multicore fiber (MCF) with dissimilar cores, which is then tapered at both ends to form multimode cores and create mode-selective photonic lantern (PL) transitions. The cores of the MCF are single-moded at 1550 nm and sufficiently spaced such that there is no observable core-To-core cross talk after a 7 m fiber length. The mode-selective PLs at each end of the MCF, in combinations with the low core-To-core cross talk of the MCF at 1550 nm, ensure that the relative amount of power in each spatial mode is preserved throughout the fibre link. As such, a PL-MCF-PL link using this approach has the potential to be resistant to FRD by inhibiting the coupling of light from lower-order to higher-order modes. We show that the full PL-MCF-PL link exhibits lower FRD than a custom multimode fiber that guides the same number of modes. A study of how the FRD behavior of the PL-MCF-PL link varies as a function of wavelength indicates some bandwidth limitations due to the wavelength-dependent properties of the PLs and the cross coupling in the MCF.