Braves Journal, The House That Mac Built

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23 Jun

Brewers 4, Braves 1

ESPN – Brewers vs. Braves – Box Score – June 23, 2008

Terrible. Braves-killer Ben Sheets did his thing, and even though the game was theoretically in doubt the whole way, you never got the feeling that the Braves were in it. Of course, Francoeur, who sucks, was back in the starting lineup, and though he was double-switched out after the seventh it was too late.

Joseph Reyes did not have it tonight, after several strong starts. He wound up giving up four runs in only 2 1/3, and left with the bases loaded. Carlyle came in, and got out of that jam and then stayed in with some great long relief, but ultimately it didn’t matter, except that Bobby managed to burn only two other relievers (and Ring for just one pitch) instead of the whole bullpen. Bennett pitched the last two.

The Braves’ only chance of a rally came in the fourth, when KJ and Teixeira singled to lead off. But McCann hit into a double play, scoring KJ but killing the rally. That was it; the tying run never reached the plate, and Sheets was perfect through the last five.

Francoeur sucks.

155 Responses to “Brewers 4, Braves 1”

  1. 1
    Parish Says:

    The good news is that Sheets is unlikely to pitch in either of the next two games.

    Even so, this looks like it will be a series loss.

  2. 2
    ugalaw Says:

    Jeff Francouer : Atlanta Braves :: Quincy Carter : University of Georgia

  3. 3
    kc Says:

    You have to give credit to Frenchy for only striking out once tonight!

  4. 4
    Parish Says:

    Julio Teheran pitched for Danville tonight. Only went 2 IP, coming out after the first batter in the third. I know these guys are on strict pitch counts, but that seems very early. I hope he is alright.

  5. 5
    kc Says:

    Instead of “Bad-Ass Weasels”, why not just simply says “Francoeur sucks”. That seems to be our common theme lately.

  6. 6
    Mac Thomason Says:

    I had “Francoeur Sucks” up for a week or so earlier — mainly to get to the top of Google for “Francoeur Sucks”. I like to change it up.

  7. 7
    Parish Says:

    Mets lose.

    We’re…still in fourth place.

  8. 8
    ububba Says:

    At least Quincy had a chemical excuse for his rapid regression.

    Hey, the Dawgs tied it again!

    We got the fever. We’re hot. We can’t be stopped.

  9. 9
    Mac Thomason Says:

    Can Georgia get a runner home from third? Yes!

  10. 10
    ugalaw Says:

    Watching the UGA-Fresno State game. Good to see that at least one team from this state still knows how to push runs across coming down the stretch.

  11. 11
    ububba Says:

    More Trivia
    I heard on the Mets broadcast that the Felix Hernandez GSHR was the first such HR by an AL pitcher since 1971.

    Last guy to do it: Steve Dunning.

    Dawgs up 7-6! Please don’t blow this one, Josh.

  12. 12
    braves14 Says:

    Is it just me, or does Katy Temple seem very suggestive sometimes?

  13. 13
    kc Says:

    Oh, sorry Mac, I missed that. I think “Francoeur sucks” deserves a longer appearance though.

    Parish, until this team starts showing any sign of life or heart, I don’t think it matters much how the other teams are doing.

  14. 14
    Mac Thomason Says:

    “Francoeur sucks” is more than a tagline. It’s a mission statement.

  15. 15
    kc Says:

    Seems like the Dawgs are showing more heart than the Braves…

  16. 16
    kc Says:

    Mission statement of Braves Journal?

  17. 17
    ububba Says:

    How…’bout…them…Dawgs?

  18. 18
    urlhix Says:

    DAWGS!!

  19. 19
    ricflair Says:

    Fresno State will even it up tomorrow. They gave that game away. Happy Birthday Georgia.

  20. 20
    Parish Says:

    For those of you looking forward to Jorge Julio coming up to Atlanta, which is inevitable, by the way, he just blew the game for Richmond in the bottom of the 10th.

    After Thorman hit his 2nd dinger of the night in the top half, Julio got the first two to ground out in the bottom of the 10th. Then, single, single, HBP, error, walk, ball game.

  21. 21
    ricflair Says:

    Sorry I am just bitter.

  22. 22
    Mac Thomason Says:

    If we’re going to discuss the CWS, for the duration Fresno will be known as the “Raisins” to avoid confusion.

  23. 23
    kc Says:

    Julio = Benetiz = Kolb = blew saves

    Just the thought of the Braves signing Julio makes me sick. I thought we have one project in Williamson already.

  24. 24
    Mac Thomason Says:

    FWIW, the other guy in the Renteria trade is doing pretty well. Also, he’s the fourth-youngest player in the league.

  25. 25
    ububba Says:

    Nothing cheap about that Beckham HR—it was crushed.

  26. 26
    ricflair Says:

    I agree with you ububba I just wish Fields would have signed with the Braves last year.

  27. 27
    kc Says:

    Gorkys has been awesome other than the hammy injury. He and Schafer should be playing on the same field by the season end. I wonder who would stay at the centerfielder. My bet is still Schafer. The future outfield of Gorkys, Schafer, and Heyward gets me very excited…yes, Frenchy is not in my plan.

    Edger, I still love you! Thanks for bringing us JJ and Gorkys!

  28. 28
    ububba Says:

    Sad to say for ATL fans, but it looks like it was a good move on his part. The Braves’ loss is the Dawgs’ gain. (And Seattle’s.)

  29. 29
    kc Says:

    Fields is represented by Boras, right?! Another nightmare…

  30. 30
    jj3bagger Says:

    Katy Temple can suggest anything she wants to me.

  31. 31
    Parish Says:

    Yankees and Red Sox lead the voting at every position in the AL All Star balloting, with the exception of catcher.

    Seems pretty obvious that the selection process needs to change.

  32. 32
    kc Says:

    http://www.ajc.com/braves/content/sports/braves/stories/2008/06/23/francoeur_0624.html

    I don’t think it will matter. He may actually get better result if he closes his eyes during at-bats.

  33. 33
    ububba Says:

    The All-Star game selection has been a joke ever since fan voting began to determine its starters.

    BTW, any high-rollers out there wanna buy my all-star game tickets? Just got ‘em in the mail today.

    Got 3 tix for the game, the HR derby, workout day, fanfest, legends & celeb softball game, all-star futures game and any other sponsored event they’re doing.

    The Yanks forced us to buy a strip of tix for the whole thing—we couldn’t just buy tickets for the actual game. That sucks even worse than our RF.

  34. 34
    Mac Thomason Says:

    It’s the fans’ game, I have no problems with fans doing the choosing. The managers and players make their share of mistakes too. If you see a real joke, it’s always the uniformed personnel who are responsible, and it’s not always the “one per team” rule.

  35. 35
    kc Says:

    It’s definitely a joke that they use the all-star game to determine the world series home field advantage. Stupid Selig.

  36. 36
    Mac Thomason Says:

    That I have no disagreement with.

  37. 37
    kc Says:

    Really? Is it because you don’t believe much in “home-field advantage” or you think it’s indeed the appropriate way to determine home field advantage?

  38. 38
    Mac Thomason Says:

    I was agreeing with you. Ambiguous phrasing.

  39. 39
    Rob Cope Says:

    What’s weird is that you don’t find really anyone who supports the rule that the All-Star game determines home-field advantage. Almost everyone I’ve encountered and read thinks that’s a silly way of determining that. And yet, year after year, the rule stands.

  40. 40
    kc Says:

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/b/breamsi01.shtml

    I am sure it must be a Pirates fan who is sponsoring this page. I didn’t realize Sid had such good strikezone judgement…and he went 6-0 in SB in 1992, how did that happen? I watch almost every game on TBS!!!

  41. 41
    Dan Says:

    If I were the Braves’ General Manager, I’d trade Francoeur during his next hot streak. Teams will still give up something of value for him.

  42. 42
    Mike Says:

    At least Morneau and Kinsler are within striking distance to become the leaders. Its not even close between Young and Jeter at SS, though.

  43. 43
    braves14 Says:

    @23

    We let Williamson go when we signed Julio, IIRC.

  44. 44
    braves14 Says:

    @ 39

    I think it’s to get the ASG more ratings. After all, This Time, It Counts!

  45. 45
    Eric Says:

    I was looking at the all-star ballot, and is it just me or is it insane that I think 4 Texas Rangers should be starting. Man if they had some pitching. I think Michael Young, Ian Kinsler, Milton Bradley and Josh Hamilton should all be starting

  46. 46
    Nick Says:

    Francoeur? Hot streak? Ha! That’s a good one.

  47. 47
    Adam M Says:

    The AL should just let the NL start someone at SS for them. That league is WEAK at that position. Young is less worthy than every single SS in the NL East, and I’m including Guzman on that list.

    But more importantly. Jeter is leading all vote-getters? Really? I mean, I’m not surprised, but I’m still disgusted by this. Does anyone realize how bad a season Jeter is having? How about .279/.339/.379? How about 19 walks in 299 plate appearances? How about a 93 OPS+?

  48. 48
    bamachum Says:

    When did fan voting to determine the starters begin?

  49. 49
    Stephen Says:

    It may have been 1969–as part of the celebration of the Baseball Centenial–but that is just a guess. By this point it has been around for a long time….

  50. 50
    mraver Says:

    I’m pretty sure the voting is a Selig thing. Maybe it started after the strike? Or somewhere in that time frame.

  51. 51
    bamachum Says:

    I looked it, fan voting has been consistent since 1970.

    http://www.baseball-almanac.com/asgmenu.shtml

    Too bad, I really wanted to blame that on Selig, too. It really does annoy me to see all the undeserving Yankees/Red Sox players in the starting lineup.

  52. 52
    Alzheimers'08! Says:

    Thanks for all the imput on the boat name, I’m down to Angler Management and Jeff Francouer Sucks…..I think I’ll go with JF Sucks…I’ll post pics as soon as its done

  53. 53
    Ben Says:

    we were beat. usually we suck. last night it was hard to tell. sheets was on a mission.

  54. 54
    Mike Says:

    I haven’t been around much to be able to read this lately, so I don’t really know where bad-ass weasels came from. Care to enlighten me?

  55. 55
    barrycuda Says:

    Mike……….its Macs’ word-twist on a comment i made to some of our esteemed whiners.

  56. 56
    Frank Says:

    I’m on the road the next two weeks. Hall of Famer Eddie Murray was on my flight from ATL to LAX yesterday. I had a brief chat with him at the baggage claim. He had a rep for being surly as a player but he was pretty friendly yesterday.

    Glad I missed the predictably lame game.

  57. 57
    Marc Schneider Says:

    Actually, until 1957 the fans voted. Then they had a problem with Cincinnati fans stuffing the ballot with Reds (Cincy fans? Wow!)so they took away fan voting until 1970. (By the way, I believe that Rico Carty was the only write-in candidate ever to be selected to the All-Star team.) I don’t really care that much about the All-Star game anyway but some of the selections are ridiculous. And, the notion of the ASG determing home field in the World Series is so asinine as to be beyond description. It’s almost as bad as the unbalanced schedule.

    I was at the Nationals game last night waiting out a rain delay. Before the delay was over, the Braves were down 2-0 and I knew it was over and just relaxed the rest of the way. Sad. BTW, Willie Harris had a home run and a triple-about the only offense for the Nats. I will say the guy can fly.

    Francouer said he needs to start doing what he did last year. No, Jeff, you actually need to start being a good baseball player, not what you have been in the past.

  58. 58
    CharlesP Says:

    Thanks for the link kc… let’s hope the contact helps the kid (even if you believe he sucks, you have to want him to STOP sucking right?). I suspect it’s grasping at straws for him, but even if it just gives him a crutch to get past the psychological part of his problems it’s certainly worth a shot.

    Oh and Marc, I’d be quite happy if he managed to at least get back to the last couple seasons production… no power and no average are worse than one of the two (even if we’d like to see both of the two). At least with some average bump he’d be grounding into fewer DPs and hopefully knocking some of his 43567 men left on base.

  59. 59
    Seat Painter Says:

    I have nothing to say about the Braves this morning. They got crushed by an ace, so I’m not upset about that.

    RE: Boat names. A friend once said that if you take the boat out of the water when you’re not on it, then it doesn’t deserve a name. But, he’s a sailing nut, so I’m not going to espouse his position. (I do like Angler Management, btw.)

  60. 60
    MGL Says:

    Perhaps they should factor All-Star voting by payroll, or perhaps by Metro Statistical Area Population.

  61. 61
    CharlesP Says:

    I agree Seat. Sheets beat us this time, we didn’t just beat ourselves. I hope JoJo bounces back, I actually figure it’s BETTER to have him have a sucky start against an ace because that way we don’t waste another 8inning 2 runs outing by not getting him any run support.

  62. 62
    hankonly Says:

    Re: Francouer

    My old management professor at UK used to say, “Nothing changes until the conviction of sin is reached.”

    I always liked that and life has proven him correct, imo.

    As such, the Braves and Jeff need to admit that his swing is fundamentally unsound and he needs to spend some time listening and learning at some minor-league level.

    Too much talent to let it go the way of Andruw Jones where stubborness and pride win out …

  63. 63
    Jake Says:

    hankonly,

    You know very little about the situation, other then what you see and hear on tv. I’d love to know where you feel that Jeff is stubborn and isn’t willing to change his swing. He has changed his swing in the past week. Is his swing perfect? No, but it’s the same swing that has done the job the past two + years. It’s a confidence thing and sending him down to the minors is going to do nothing but make that worse.

    I understand that when a team isn’t doing well the fans tend to focus and call out the player who is performing the worst, but Jeff is hardly the braves only problem.

  64. 64
    Bethany Says:

    Jake, the kid has had people worshiping him since he was a teenager, he doesn’t need any more confidence. He HASN’T done the job the past two years, and that’s the problem. He was average at best before, now he’s awful.

  65. 65
    csg Says:

    I would have our problems in this order

    1. injuries
    2. managing
    3. TP or hitting in general
    4. Tex
    5. Jeff

    I have Tex before Jeff because of salary issues and the fact that we sold the farm for the guy. Hopefully, he can turn this thing around for us. TP comes before both of them just because of the teams struggles with K’s and just being able to make contact in crucial situations.

  66. 66
    Mac Thomason Says:

    But Teixeira has merely been mediocre. Francoeur is a giant sucking vortex of outs, killing rallies in their cradle and looking like nothing’s wrong when he does it.

  67. 67
    Mac Thomason Says:

    Meanwhile, the Braves do not have a strikeout problem. The offense’s biggest problem is a lack of power.

  68. 68
    csg Says:

    #67 – good point ….. I can handle someone sucking it up batting 6th in the order and getting paid league minimum. However, trading 5 guys for someone that is mediocre and letting him cleanup and getting paid 12-13 million isnt acceptable either

  69. 69
    DJ Says:

    Did Brayan Pena ever sign with anyone? Is he still in limbo?

  70. 70
    csg Says:

    DJ – the Royals got him, meanwhile Miller is still on our roster

  71. 71
    Jake Says:

    Bethany,

    How does people worshipping you and confidence go together? Just because people think you are god doesn’ t mean you think your god. I can tell you that his confidence is a mess. Jeff is a guy that thrives on positive attention. Some players have a hard time when people boo them and some don’t. For Jeff, he’s someone who is bothered by people booing.

    Your trying to tell me that he didn’t do his job last year? Perhaps your expectations are too high for him. Maybe Jeff is a 260 20-25 hr, 80-100 rbi guy. There is nothing wrong with that. What other options do you have? Blanco (hitting less then 250 also), Kotsay (injured), Diaz (Injured), Brandon Jones (who knows??).

    He’s not going to be sent down so people need to quit asking for it. Batting him 7th or 8th is the key. Get him out of the middle of the lineup and his “giant sucking vortex of outs” won’t be so great and hopefully he can snap out of this thing.

  72. 72
    csg Says:

    we are 4th in the league in OPS and 5th in SLG%

  73. 73
    csg Says:

    NL only

  74. 74
    Mac Thomason Says:

    There is no place in the lineup where a a sub-.300 on-base percentage isn’t a problem. You suffer it with pitchers, because you have to. Otherwise, that guy better be bringing something else really special to the table. Francoeur has nothing. He’s a bad defensive player with minimal power.

  75. 75
    Bethany Says:

    The regulars here have already documented why Jeff is an abysmal player many times, Jake. And I personally would rather see someone else in RF and let Jeff develop in the minors. If his confidence is that fragile, then maybe he isn’t ready for the big leagues.

  76. 76
    joesteve Says:

    I blame Bobby and TP primarily — but regarding bullpen management, it seems to me that things have really gone downhill since Leo left (maybe I’m just forgetting) and I wonder how much influence Ned Yost had in Bobby sane.

  77. 77
    Bethany Says:

    I will also add that Jeff apparently thinks pretty highly of himself, seeing as he’s refused nice contracts from the Braves the past few years.

  78. 78
    Jake Says:

    Bethany,

    What gives the “regulars” the ability to grade players appropriately? Just curious, but how does someone who sits on a message board during games while watching Peachtree TV make their opinion more accurate?

    Jeff is not an abysmal player; he is having an abysmal year. Your comment regarding his contract is also comical. Did he turn down a contract, yes. But that has nothing to do with the current state of his confidence. I’m not saying he is awful, right now he is. All I’m saying is that it’s a confidence thing and that will not be fixed in the minors.

  79. 79
    Jake Says:

    joesteve,

    You have a great point. Bullpen management does seem awful this year, especially considering most of the year we’ve had 12-13 pitchers on the roster.

  80. 80
    Mac Thomason Says:

    Francoeur isn’t a bad player? Really? He’s never been a good player. He was a lucky player when he was first called up. His career OPS+ is 98. His career on-base percentage is .315. His career offensive winning percentage is .480. If you aren’t a first-class defensive player at a key position, this is a bad player. Francoeur is a bad right fielder.

  81. 81
    csg Says:

    #74 – we are on the same page, I also think Jeff is a terrible player. He’s actually the worst in the NL at this point, possibly even all of the majors. I’m saying that most of us knew that before the start of this season and were’nt expecting anything different. I had real high hopes for Tex, esp. hitting behind Chipper, but in my eyes he’s been the bigger disappointment so far this season between the two. I’m sure with time that will change

  82. 82
    Bethany Says:

    They have the ability because they study the game religiously, are lifelong fans, and probably know more about the stats than anyone. And you are sitting on a message board preaching your opinions right now as well, only you can’t seem to back up anything you are saying.

    And why doesn’t the contract signify his confidence? Why is it comical? He obviously thinks he is worth more than the Braves were offering, which would signify confidence in my view.

    You’d best not stereotype the people here. And I’m curious what makes you so exalted that you feel you have the right to insult people who watch the games on tv.

  83. 83
    csg Says:

    that was suppose to read the worst RF, there are far worse players in the majors

  84. 84
    Mac Thomason Says:

    For instance, the backup catcher.

  85. 85
    Bethany Says:

    I really hope Sammons has progressed enough to make the team next year. I’m not sure I can handle any more of Mr. Miller.

  86. 86
    Jake Says:

    Bethany,

    My comment wasn’t a knock on the people who watch games on tv. It was simply asking you why the “regulars” opinion was so valuable to you.

    Please read my previous post again. I said turning down the contract doesn’t signify his CURRENT confidence. Going into the season, sure he felt he was worth more, but thats not current. Get it??

    It just bothers me when fans become so angry at a person because they are playing a game bad. I never understood that. Yesterday at the game a couple dumb ass fans were screaming some awful stuff at Jeff right in the middle of the family section. Thats just not cool. They weren’t aware where they were sitting and I actually went over to tell them to chill out.

    If you want to say someone sucks that fine, but some of the comments I read on here and other blogs or some of the comments I hear out of peoples mouths about these players is just not right. And like I said earlier, my posts were not meant to insult people who watch the games on tv.

  87. 87
    csg Says:

    #84 – backup catchers, some util players, Reitsma, Kolb, Jorge Julio, and Chris Woodward

    thats all I can think of right now

  88. 88
    Mac Thomason Says:

    I don’t think any of the guys you named are actually in the majors right now. Kolb and Julio certainly aren’t.

  89. 89
    Marc Schneider Says:

    I agree that we fans are not in the best position to evaluate a player. But it’s not rocket science. I do agree that we are in no position to evaluate whether his confidence is shot or not. I can’t imagine that there isn’t some problem with confidence regardless of his outward demeanor. Sending him to the minors after being a regular for three years isn’t going to help because, even if confidence is a problem, hitting minor leaguers isn’t likely to help him at the big-league level. Recognizing that I’m no expert on hitting, I think Jeff’s problem is more fundamental and always has been–he has little patience at the plate, possibly because he doesn’t have a particularly quick bat and fears missing fastballs. He has always been a better breaking ball hitter to the extent that, I think, he wants to hit breaking balls and, therefore, swings at them no matter where they are.

    Re his being worshipped: I don’t know what effect it had on him but having a Delta commercial before he had done anything significant probably didn’t help. But the fact is he has fundamental issues that have nothing to do with whether or not he thinks or is being told he is a great player. The problem is people keep saying he has so much talent and I’m not sure that’s true. Baseball is not nearly as much a game of physical, athletic skills as other sports. Patience, discipline, and the ability to adapt to different situations is, I think, at least as important as being fast or strong. In that sense, I think Francouer doesn’t have nearly as much baseball talent as people like to say or at least he has not displayed it yet.

  90. 90
    csg Says:

    yeah, I know I was just going a little overboard

  91. 91
    csg Says:

    I think him getting selected to the USA world team hurt him some, he’ll regret not signing that contract last year Im afraid

  92. 92
    Jake Says:

    Gabe Gross, Adam Lind, Michael Cuddyer, Ryan Sweeney, Elijah Dukes, Endy Chavez, Geoff Jenkins, Ken Griffey Jr., Brad Hawpe *, Justin Uptown.

    All these players have similar if not worse thats then Jeff and all of these players are starting RF. I put Hawpe on there because his numbers were a little better but playing in Colorado they just be much better.

    Many of these players are making 5-9 million a year also, jeff is making 400K. Just throwing it out there.

  93. 93
    mraver Says:

    Actually, I think I agree more with Jake than with Mac on this one. Well, maybe: Frenchy’s a mediocre player (who’s still young and has a lot of potential) who’s having a horrible year. I don’t think he’s lost confidence, but I do think he is pressing and trying stupid things to get back on track. (Like always taking until he’s got a strike on him… which is every first pitch he’s seeing now because opponents have picked up on this. Hell, the Braves announcers did last weekend!) He’s a good defensive player, but lately he’s been letting his offensive struggles get into his head in the field. Missing ground balls as an OF is just… bad.

    But he doesn’t need to be sent down to the minors; you just don’t do that with guys who’ve been in the majors for as long as Frenchy has. Ideally, you sit him down for a couple days at a time, maybe a week, (DL him if possible) and have him work on some stuff in the cage.

    But the Braves don’t have that luxury, already missing their starting LF and CF, especially with Infante needing to be used at 3rd. But I dunno. Maybe you have to sit him for a couple games soon once Chipper is able to play the field and you can spare Infante.

    But a little perspective on Frenchy is necessary. It’s certainly frustrating to see him suck this much and get mostly a free pass by the press, but at the same time, he’s young, and this is probably going to be about the worst year he ever has.

  94. 94
    Jake Says:

    Marc Schneider,

    Very good post.

  95. 95
    Jake Says:

    mraver, I hate to throw this out there but I must to prove a point. I talked to Jeff after BP yesterday and I promise you, he’s a mess inside. The first thing he told me was, “Man, i’m sucking”. He’s trying very hard and doing all he can. It’s much easier to root for these guys then to post titles to a website like “Francoeur sucks” and “I hate this guy”.

  96. 96
    Stu Says:

    mraver,
    If Jake says Francoeur is struggling with confidence, he’s probably struggling with confidence.

    FWIW, Jeff has been pretty atrocious in the field this year. He’s still got the strong arm, but I don’t think it’s possible to argue that he’s been anything other than bad in RF in 2008.

    I do generally agree with both you and Jake that the Francoeur-bashing has gotten out of hand on here. The real problem is the manager who keeps putting him in situations to fail, IMHO.

  97. 97
    Bethany Says:

    Just because someone is trying or has good intentions doesn’t mean they are cut out for what they are doing.

    I believe a few days ago there was a list of starting NL right fielders, and Jeff had the lowest OPS of everyone.

  98. 98
    Mac Thomason Says:

    There are 25 qualifying right fielders in the major leagues. Only one has a worse runs created/27 outs, Emil Brown. There is no defense for the way Francoeur is playing.

  99. 99
    csg Says:

    I agree that Frenchy isnt as bad as what we’re getting from him right now. The guy does still have a pretty solid career average for hitting with runners in scoring position and he’s def. been better after the allstar break. I’m sure he’s pressing, but he’s got to find away to get the job done at the plate and in the field. I’m pulling for the guy

  100. 100
    Jake Says:

    Stu,

    Just look at how many times he has went to throw the ball in the outfield and drops it. It’s a confidence thing, it’s a mess.

    Also, when Chipper is out of the lineup that puts additional pressure on guys like Tex, Mac, and Jeff to step up. Imagine being a in a huge slump and having your best player out of the lineup and you know that you need to step it up. Not easy.

  101. 101
    jea Says:

    Just because I think Francoeur sucks right now doesn’t mean I want him to fail. I am rooting for him, as I would any player, but something has to be done for this team to improve now and for the future. I don’t know what that thing is, though. I do recall Bobby trying to help Andruw’s hitting problems in the past: is he/would he do something similar for Jeff? That may pay better dividends?

  102. 102
    Jake Says:

    Mac Thompson,

    You may be right. But there is also no defense for the way some people act on this board and at the games. It’s a damn shame.

  103. 103
    mraver Says:

    I guess my point wasn’t that he hasn’t been awful this year.

    My point is that “this year” (or rather, “this half-year”) is a rather small datapoint. Frenchy’s been awful this year, but that doesn’t mean he’s an awful player.

  104. 104
    Stu Says:

    There are 25 qualifying right fielders in the major leagues. Only one has a worse runs created/27 outs, Emil Brown. There is no defense for the way Francoeur is playing.

    Well, I do think it’s worth pointing out, even if JC will make fun of me for it, that Jeff’s also between the 3rd and 5th youngest of the guys on that list. (Upton and Kemp are younger; Hermida and Markakis are the same age.)

    This doesn’t mean he’s not killing us this year, but I do think it creates a “defense” for Jeff—namely, that not many his age are being asked to start every game in RF and be a key factor in the lineup.

    Again, I’m not saying Francoeur isn’t hurting us, because he obviously is (and it’s ludicrous to say Teix is hurting us more, BTW), but there is still time for him to develop into something resembling good.

    If only his manager/organization would help him out a little.

  105. 105
    joesteve Says:

    well, what’s even worse is that among the 65 qualifying outfielders in the majors, Jeff is ranked 62. And I agree, we have to blame the coaching here first — if we assume Jeff is willing to learn, what are they saying??? anything?? He needs help before he completely self-destructs.

  106. 106
    jea Says:

    Also, there’s no excuse for yelling profanity or other offensive statements when there are kids or families around, but criticism is part of the job, whether anyone likes it or not. It’s part of any job, and there is some legitimate criticism of Francoeur’s performance–at least for this year.

  107. 107
    csg Says:

    on another note, thank you Peachtree TV for carrying tonights and tomorrow nights game. So I guess, I’ll get some things done around the house. I wont be able to watch another game until friday

  108. 108
    Jake Says:

    jea,

    Please don’t compare professional athlete’s criticism to jobs that you or I may have. We do not have hundreds of thousands of people watching every move we do during our workday.

    “Damn, that person sucks; they typed two grammar errors in that email. Hey shit head, you blow, go die, no one likes you”. By the way, the last comment was what was said last night, I’m just thankful Jeff’s parents and wife was not there to hear it.

  109. 109
    Bethany Says:

    Yes, but athletes are also much more well compensated for their jobs. Heckling has always been a part of sports, good or bad. These guys are adults, and they have to ignore it and get on with their work.

  110. 110
    Mac Thomason Says:

    Bethany, see the link I posted at 98. No NL RF, and only one AL RF, has hit as poorly as Francoeur.

  111. 111
    Jake Says:

    Bethany,

    To certain extend your right. I also think it would be stupid to try and condone this behavior by saying heckling has been a part of the game forever. Instead think about how stupid these idiots look acting that way. It’s way beyond heckling when people use terms like “hate”.

    On another topic: Alabama starting LB Jimmy Johns arrested for selling cocaine. That hurts.

  112. 112
    Parish Says:

    I am kind of late to this discussion, but I have to laud this quote from post 66.

    “…a giant sucking vortex of outs…”

    Awesome!

  113. 113
    joesteve Says:

    Jake, dude, this is a fan site — nobody’s judging Jeff’s character or trying to determine his eternal destiny — we’re talking about performance, the performance of a highly paid professional athlete. I really doubt Jeff is as sensitive as you are. He wouldn’t have made it this far if he had been. He’s played terribly this year and it doesn’t sound like he’s disagreeing with our views here. If he’s truly offended and hurt over what’s said here, hitting is the least of his problems.

  114. 114
    Robert Says:

    If only his manager/organization would help him out a little.

    Maybe I missed this upstream but what does this mean? The Braves and Bobby Cox have given him every opportunity to be successful.

    Stuff like this is ridiculous:

    The real problem is the manager who keeps putting him in situations to fail, IMHO.

    Bobby has done everything possible to try and help Francoeur along and has nothing to show for it.

  115. 115
    c. shorter Says:

    I think the sentiment is that the team/management could help him out by giving him some days off, moving him down in the lineup, etc to take some of the pressure off. maybe i’ve misread, though.

  116. 116
    Jake Says:

    Well, hopefully the Braves can win tonight and hopefully Frenchy can break out of this slump.

    Anyways, peace out. Good to have the conversation. I’m sure i’ll be back sometime next month. Don’t get to come on here too much.

  117. 117
    Robert Says:

    Ok, well they are trying that now. Here’s a prediction: It won’t work. Francoeur is simply not good enough at baseball to be a starting major league corner outfielder. A day off and a change in lineup positioning is not going to affect that.

  118. 118
    Bethany Says:

    Thank you for the link, Mac, I wasn’t sure about the Al stats. And I’m not condoning heckling, Jake, I’m just saying it’s there.

    I don’t know, I just don’t fall into the “pity the professional athlete” camp.

    Morton is up tonight, right? That’s something to look forward to.

  119. 119
    csg Says:

    well BREAKING NEWS for us tide fans…

    Jimmy Johns arrested on 5 counts of cocaine distribution to undercover agents. Facing up to 3 years per count, 15 max in Federal Prison. Waste of Talent!

  120. 120
    Stu Says:

    c. shorter is right about what I meant. Robert is right that they’ve started trying to move him around and rest him lately. They waited way too long to start doing that, though.

    And, as I’ve said repeatedly, I don’t disagree that he’s terrible (at least right now). I just don’t think, given his struggles, that his situation has been handled very well at all by the Braves.

  121. 121
    Parish Says:

    #117 – Robert, I am not so sure I agree.

    I want to reiterate what I posted two days ago:

    For a while, his XBH% was up and he was seeing more pitches per AB. That made me feel like he was improving marginally in some fundamentals. I think that it is possible he was on the path to better baseball, and bad luck helped him fall back into bad habits.

    I really think the “pressing” or bad habits are the problem here. Ultimately, I think Frenchy should be and will be a servicable major leaguer, but not a star. I hope for a breakout, but I expect marginal improvement.

    As of now, he has dropped off the cliff.

  122. 122
    c. shorter Says:

    At this point we’d probably be content to see the guy return that hit mistakes and occasionally took them out of the park.

    Here’s to hoping he can right the ship.

    Go Braves!

  123. 123
    Stu Says:

    Ultimately, I think Frenchy should be and will be a servicable major leaguer, but not a star. I hope for a breakout, but I expect marginal improvement.

    Totally agree, Parish.

  124. 124
    barrycuda Says:

    Jimmy Johns sucks…………crank up the website.

  125. 125
    Stu Says:

    I disagree.

  126. 126
    Mac Thomason Says:

    Jimmy Johns sucks. Jimmy John’s does not.

  127. 127
    Stu Says:

    I agree.

  128. 128
    barrycuda Says:

    i never thought the food was much better than average franchised, fast, fare. ive been twice and have no plans to go back.

  129. 129
    Parish Says:

    Okay – time for me to get to the All-Star ballot.

    Chipper and McCann! They deserve it.

  130. 130
    CharlesP Says:

    Am I the only one torn on the Chipper All-Star voting? I of course want him to get the recognition he deserves, but for the sake of the rest of our season I’d like to see him get a few days rest before the 2nd half.

  131. 131
    A.West Says:

    Is Jake playing for the Braves? Who else talks to Frenchy after batting practice?

    Jake,
    I want Francouer to get better. But I think the problem is that his basic swing and approach was never great, and pitchers are just getting better and better at exploiting his weaknesses. He is probably really afraid that he won’t be able to do something about it. He really does need to rework his swing from the ground up, but there’s probably no way he can do that during the season. He seems to need to start his swing too early, which means he needs to decide to swing before he really knows where it’s going. What he needs is to be able to read pitches better, and start his swing later, after he has a better idea of where the pitch is going.

    This is most unlike Chipper, who reads pitches really well, and doesn’t swing at pitches that are impossible to hit hard. What Francouer really needs to do is read Ted Williams’ old book (on strike zone judgement not necessarily the uppercut swing part.)

  132. 132
    barrycuda Says:

    Frenchy reading Ted Williams’ book on hitting would be like me reading a book by Miles Davis on how to play the trumpet. about equal chances of success.

  133. 133
    Marc Schneider Says:

    @94,

    Thanks Jake.

    There is no doubt fans get carried away and it should be unacceptable, regardless of how a player is performing, to make it personal or to make remarks about their family. The incident with Reitsma where the nitwit driving down the street saw him with his young child and yelled “you suck” really makes me wonder what the society is coming to. Unfortunately, that is the nature of the profession. At the same time, a little perspective is in order. For the most part, Francoeur has been and remains enormously popular both with fans and with baseball analysts seemingly beyond what his performance would justify.

    The issue about whether he will develop really depends on how much you think age and experience has on hitting. Clearly, good hitters can get better with age to a certain extent–see Chipper and, yes, Bonds–as they get smarter. But I’m skeptical that a guy with three years in the majors can really develop the kind of plate discipline necessary to be a real good hitter. I’m sure Frenchy can do better than he is this year; the question is whether being league average or even slightly better is enough for a starting right fielder on a championship caliber team. I think that Frenchy’s struggles wouldn’t be nearly as problematic if Teixera had been hitting. On the other hand, given the expectations for Frenchy, it was fair to expect that he would improve at least some.

  134. 134
    Dan Says:

    Jeff Francoeur bad in 2006: well he’s just 22.

    Jeff Francoeur bad in 2007: well he’s just 23.

    Jeff Francoeur bad this season: well he’s just 24.

    When he is inevitably bad in 2009: well he’s just 25.

    Looking forward now to the 2014 season when the age excuse no longer applies to Mr. Francoeur…

  135. 135
    Phillip Says:

    The first cds I ever got were: The Rockin ’70s (featuring the immortal Billy Swan), & ZZ Top’s Greatest Hits. I got them on the same day as I got my first boom box.

  136. 136
    Bryan Says:

    wait a second there Dan, i think you are being a little harsh. his line in 07 was 188 hits, 293 avg and 105 rbis – thats better than league average as a 23 year old – get your facts straight

  137. 137
    Tony Says:

    So Francouer is wearing a corrective lens in his right eye now…for his sake I hope that’s the issue. I think Francouer messed up when he tried to hit more HRs this year. Last year he was content with going to the other way and he hit .293, now he just looks lost up there.

    I’m not giving up on him, but he should be batting in the eight spot until he can figure things out, also more days off are in order. Or maybe he will be just another suitable outfielder and his ’05 call-up was a fluke.

    I really like that Braun-Fielder-Hart heart of the order.

  138. 138
    Mac Thomason Says:

    Ugg, counting stats… He played every game. He was not above average in any meaningful sense. He was right at the league average OBP and slightly above the league average in Slugging, but for a right fielder those numbers are well below the standard.

  139. 139
    ryan c Says:

    “Jeff Francoeur bad in 2007: well he’s just 23.”

    dan, your quotes are sometimes just not accurate. francoeur was, by no means, “bad” in 2007. he was at least league average offensively and above average defensively. dont let his terrible campaign this year misconstrue a pretty decent 2007. so far, francoeur has had 1 1/2 decent seasons and 1 1/2 poor seasons.

  140. 140
    Stephen Says:

    Yeah–the Frenchy bashing has been excessive–but then again he has been a very frustrating player to watch. So much hype; so much potential; so little improvement; and so little to show for the season.

    I am sorry to learn that his poor preformance has affected his self-esteem. Clearly, Frenchy has ego needs too….Doubtless being made into the future of the Braves and getting worshipped all over Atlanta was just as difficult….

  141. 141
    Bryan Says:

    he was above league average in AVG and slugging – are we really complaining about his 2007 year?? find something else to complain about

  142. 142
    ryan c Says:

    “He was right at the league average OBP and slightly above the league average in Slugging, but for a right fielder those numbers are well below the standard.”

    in a time where every position can hit, i dont think comparing a player (besides catcher) to the other players in that position is completely justifiable, especially when taking into account a player’s defense (which jeff’s has been poor this year, but normally above average). looking at league average, or maybe starting players’ average would be a better comparison.

  143. 143
    CharlesP Says:

    Love this line from the team report on yahoo sports:

    INF Brent Lillibridge was recalled from Class AAA Richmond as a reinforcement for the infield because 3B Chipper Jones and SS Yunel Escobar are a little gimpy.

  144. 144
    Parish Says:

    Do you think Lillibridge is up to teach Frenchy how to hit?

  145. 145
    CharlesP Says:

    HA! I just loved the phrase “are a little gimpy.”

  146. 146
    Stephen Says:

    Does Lillibridge have a hit yet?

  147. 147
    Kyle B. Says:

    On my fantasy baseball website, they make it sound like the Brewers would be willing to shop Prince Fielder in the off-season, based on a statement by their GM. What kind of figures would Fielder get as compared to Tex?

  148. 148
    Mac Thomason Says:

    The radio people in Alabama are, of course, freaking out. Right now, Jimmy Johns is apparently Scarface, and everyone knew it, and Nick Saban was wilfully blind.

    There are still significant differences in what corner outfielders hit and what center fielders and middle infielders hit. Not to mention pitchers, who make up about five percent of plate appearances in the NL and drag down the average. “Average” hitting is significantly below average for a corner outfielder, and Francoeur was not a strength of the team last year.

  149. 149
    Mac Thomason Says:

    And apparently Johns was spending his time hanging out with a bad crowd — fraternity boys.

  150. 150
    bamachum Says:

    Mac, it was somewhat fairly common knowledge among some of my fellow UA students that Johns was a dope dealer. I think the police has been building a case for quite a while now.

    I heard from a friends dad in B’ham (that knows stuff) they even “advised” Saban this past fall, without any details, that it would be in the best interest of program if he didn’t play much this past season (not that he would have anyway, because he’s merely an internet legend).

    This doesn’t come as a shock to me at least, and I would never post this on Tider Insider. haha

    I think a small contingent of the students knew about Johns, but yes, the media will blow it out of proportion to try to make Coach Saban look bad.

    Anyway, Corky Miller sucks. Also, Braves and Alabama Baseball related—-have the Braves signed 3rd Round Pick Craig Kimbrel yet?

  151. 151
    Mac Thomason Says:

    Game thread is up.

  152. 152
    Stu Says:

    the media will blow it out of proportion to try to make Coach Saban look bad.

    The media won’t have to try very hard.

  153. 153
    Smitty Says:

    Jake,

    I agree that Francoeur probably will get better and break out of this.

    However, everytime he comes to bat he practically gets a standing ovation. I have heard very little booing of him durring the game.

    True, some people on this board get carried away, but I am sure Jeffy Boy doesn’t read this and it has nothing to do with his performance

  154. 154
    bamachum Says:

    The media won’t have to try very hard.

    Its baseball season so I won’t address UA football beyond this comment, however….

    I wasn’t referring to the cocaine dealing, as being blown out of proportion, I meant that the media will use it as an avenue to make Coach Saban look bad, despite this stuff happens in almost all programs around the country, not that I’m condoning it.

  155. 155
    Stu Says:

    What I meant was, it’s not hard to make Nick Saban look bad.

    You rightly point out that he’s not the only bad-guy coach.

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