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Wednesday, July 09, 2008

ZiPS Career Projection - Jeff Francoeur

Love him, hate him, or really hate him, Jeff Francoeur’s not just the hacktastic privileged hometown son, he’s a way of life in rightfield in Atlanta, where even his waning powers of competence aren’t enough to get him demoted for more than 3 days.  Perhaps Chuck James can get himself back to Atlanta (2.58 ERA in the minors) and Atlanta will be able to send Francoeur back to the Southern League, enabling the team to maintain their required White Boy from Atlanta roster spot.

ZiPS Career Projection - Jeff “Garçon d’Or” Francoeur
———————————————————————————————————————
Year   AB   R   H 2B 3B HR RBI   BB   SO SB   BA   OBP   SLG   OPS+
———————————————————————————————————————
2005   254   41   77 20   1 14   45   11   58   3 .303 .342 .555   126
2006   621   83 169 24   6 29 103   23 132   1 .272 .308 .470   87
2007   642   84 188 40   0 19 105   42 129   5 .293 .341 .444   103
2008   625   76 154 35   3 17   81   36 119   0 .246 .298 .394   78
2009   628   77 163 35   2 18   87   36 126   2 .260 .308 .408   85
2010   602   77 162 34   2 18   86   36 115   1 .269 .319 .422   91
2011   554   70 145 31   2 16   77   32 109   0 .262 .311 .409   86
2012   481   60 126 27   2 13   66   29   91   0 .262 .313 .403   85
2013   375   47 100 21   1   9   50   23   70   0 .266 .318 .405   87
2014   316   40   84 18   1   8   43   20   62   0 .266 .320 .411   89
2015   273   35   73 16   1   7   37   18   51   0 .268 .323 .413   90
2016   225   29   60 13   1   5   30   15   42   0 .268 .325 .406   89
2017   170   22   45 10   1   4   22   11   31   0 .265 .323 .395   86
2018   124   16   33   7   1   3   16   8   23   0 .263 .323 .393   86
———————————————————————————————————————
Total 5890 757 1579 332 24 179 849 339 1159 12 .268 .317 .424   91
———————————————————————————————————————

Dan Szymborski Posted: July 09, 2008 at 07:34 PM | 93 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1. Mike Emeigh Posted: July 09, 2008 at 07:57 PM (#2850875)
James has been struggling with his command lately; he's still a ways from returning, 2.58 ERA or not.

-- MWE
   2. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 09, 2008 at 07:59 PM (#2850880)
So...Gary Ward as a comp?
   3. Spahn Insane Posted: July 09, 2008 at 08:14 PM (#2850917)
Say--that projection's fairly crappy.
   4. JPWF13 Posted: July 09, 2008 at 08:16 PM (#2850925)
ouch, and I thought I was Frenchy hater....

I wa slooking at his BBREF comps, main probklem? They were all better than Frenchy, it's just unusual for someone to compile so many ribbies at such a young age, to have such a low OPS+....

Through 23 Frenchy had a 319/76 K/BB his average comp was at 222/125
Only 2, Luzinski and Grieve, had as much trouble making contact as Frenchy, both walked much more, Grieve had no future, and teh Bull, well there is/was no real similarity betyween Frenchy and the Bull as players...

Only Valentine drew walks as infrequently as Frenchy, but Ellis had no future either (whether Ellis would have had a future absent bad recreational habits is another issue)...

His #1 Pecota comp is a player I'd completely forgotten about- Charlie Spikes- and yes, he is a real good comp
His #2- George Hendrick- I just don't buy, Hendrick didn't walk when he was 22/22- but he never K'd like Frenchy
#3 Vernon Wells- same, he was/is much better at making contact.

Two comps I'd suggest- Sammy Sosa and Juan Encarnacion (some of the years up there could fit in Juan's career BTW)
   5. rb's team is hopeful for the new year! Posted: July 09, 2008 at 08:42 PM (#2851003)
The braves have other white boys from atlanta on the team.
   6. Dr Love Posted: July 09, 2008 at 08:43 PM (#2851005)
White Boy from Atlanta roster spot


No love for Blane Boyer?
   7. The District Attorney Posted: July 09, 2008 at 08:46 PM (#2851016)
Similar Batters through Age 23

1. Greg Luzinski (971)
2. Jeff Burroughs (970)
3. Jack Clark (967)
4. Del Ennis (962)
5. Ellis Valentine (961)
6. Ben Grieve (954)
7. Harold Baines (950)
8. Bruce Campbell (949)
9. Tommy Davis (946)
10. Gus Bell (945)
This is such a tremendously weird list. A Gold Glover's top comp is Greg Luzinski. A guy who doesn't walk at all is compared to Jack Clark and Ben Grieve. And the comp scores are very high, too; it's not a question of bad comps due to uniqueness.

The one thing I do get out of this list is that Frenchy is very unlikely to stall out at 35-40 walks per year as ZiPS projects. I could see him in the Ennis/G. Bell mold of "RBI guys" who are actually good players. I am really having problems at this point envisioning him hitting like Luzinski or Clark, though -- those guys were tremendous hitters -- or having a career that looks anything like Harold Baines' at all.
   8. MM1f Posted: July 09, 2008 at 08:52 PM (#2851028)
Or McCann. If he gets hurt the Braves can call up Clint Sammons to maintain their "white guys from Atlanta" number.

Actually since Jason Perry was called up for Francouer the Braves maintained their "white guys from greater Atlanta" number and improved it once Frenchy came back up.
   9. MM1f Posted: July 09, 2008 at 08:53 PM (#2851034)
Post 8 was in RE: to 6.
   10. flournoy Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:02 PM (#2851050)
If that were Francoeur's actual career, at what point do you think he would come to terms with the fact that he was not a superstar? I think about 2014, while playing for his fifth or sixth big league team.
   11. Dr Love Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:06 PM (#2851064)
Re: #8

McCann is from Athens though.
   12. flournoy Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:09 PM (#2851070)
That's where he was born, but he grew up in metro Atlanta. Athens is close enough to be lumped in with Atlanta anyway, though most of us would rather not acknowledge its existence.
   13. Dr Love Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:14 PM (#2851077)
That's where he was born, but he grew up in metro Atlanta.


Ah yes, forgot about that.

Athens is close enough to be lumped in with Atlanta anyway, though most of us would rather not acknowledge its existence.


It's over an hour away. Personally I wouldn't call that close.
   14. Golfing Great Mitch Cumstein Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:16 PM (#2851080)
What is the story behind the demotion and callup after three games? It just strikes me as an intentional slap in the face with no real developmental benefit.
   15. flournoy Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:20 PM (#2851087)
Half of metro Atlanta is an hour away. It's a very spread-out area. That said, Athens is a little too far to be metro Atlanta, but not by that much.
   16. Dr Love Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:20 PM (#2851088)
Half of metro Atlanta is an hour away. It's a very spread-out area.


I know. I live there.
   17. _ Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:24 PM (#2851094)
I think they planned to have him down there longer, but then 3 players went on the DL at the same time, including his replacement in RF.
   18. flournoy Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:25 PM (#2851096)
What is the story behind the demotion and callup after three games? It just strikes me as an intentional slap in the face with no real developmental benefit.


The story is that Omar Infante, Manny Acosta, and Jeff Bennett all had to go on the DL at the same time, and the Braves needed three more players. They chose Brent Lillibridge, Vladimir Nunez, and Francoeur. In a "win now" way, Francoeur was the best choice for a position player, since he was probably the best major league player in their minor league system. However, I don't think they did his development any favors by calling him back up so quickly.

It's annoying that it became such a big deal for the Braves to demote a young player who was playing like garbage. It should never have gotten to that point. I think the biggest problem is the way the Braves advertise him as The Franchise.
   19. Boots Day Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:30 PM (#2851102)
Francoeur reminds me of Cory Snyder: Decent power, great throwing arm, no idea of the strike zone. At age 23, Snyder hit .272/.299/.500, with 24 homers, 123 Ks and 16 walks. He had one more season of roughly that same quality in him, then was basically done at age 26.
   20. Mike Green Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:36 PM (#2851105)
Good call, Boots. Snyder had the hype too.
   21. xdog Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:41 PM (#2851114)
Athens is close enough to be lumped in with Atlanta anyway, though most of us would rather not acknowledge its existence.


Sorry, you don't know what you're missing. I sure hope you don't prefer Gwinnett.

Also, since we're dancing around some smack here, am I the only one who thinks Francoeur is somewhat intellectually challenged? Something about how his lip is always back over his teeth. Maybe he should have taken the full ride to play SS for Clemson.
   22. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:47 PM (#2851126)
Someone, somewhere suggested Corey Patterson. Seems reasonable. As for what is or is not "metro Atlanta" if you're going to count Lawrenceville you might as well count Athens. I like Athens personally. As such, I'd hate to lump it into all of those rings of hell that exist OTP. I like to think of it as Atlanta, wastelands and Athens/Chattanooga/B'ham.
   23. JPWF13 Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:51 PM (#2851128)
Good call, Boots. Snyder had the hype too.

Snyder was never as athletic as Frenchy, more raw power- but that never really did Snyder any good- but yes Snyder was hyped to the sky- which at the time I recalled being odd since usually scouts back then did not think much of un-althletic sluggers with contact problems-
   24. xdog Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:53 PM (#2851131)
Brook Jacoby? Former Brave and white as well.
   25. Tracy Posted: July 09, 2008 at 09:57 PM (#2851134)
Snyder was never as athletic as Frenchy, more raw power- but that never really did Snyder any good- but yes Snyder was hyped to the sky- which at the time I recalled being odd since usually scouts back then did not think much of un-althletic sluggers with contact problems-


Snyder played 3B in the minors and ~50 games at SS in the bigs, so I think he had the athleticism. He just didn't know the strike zone from a hole in the ground.
   26. Dan Szymborski Posted: July 09, 2008 at 10:00 PM (#2851136)
Top ZiPS comps for Francoeur at this point of his career:

Cory Snyder
Jerry Morales
Glenn Wilson
George Wright
Eric Karros
Joe Borchard
Todd Linden
Willie Montanez
Wally Post
Joe Pepitone
   27. Dan Posted: July 09, 2008 at 10:25 PM (#2851149)
That is an ugly list.
   28. Walt Davis Posted: July 09, 2008 at 10:40 PM (#2851158)
Finally some realistic comps.

Hate to say it (I lie) but I called this a couple years ago. Nobody listened. I'm not right all that often, I'd appreciate it if you listened when I am. :-)

Of course he will now go on to be a good player just to remind me of my hubris.

True, even I wasn't as pessimistic as ZIPS above, I figured he'd become a 100-105 OPS+ kinda guy.

On the bb-ref comps, remember they don't adjust for era. Having "similar" raw stats to good hitters from lower offensive eras is not generally a good thing. Frnacoeurs OPS+ was 100, his average comp's 116. The only remotely close comps there are Baines, Campbell and Gus Bell. In fairness, Baines and Campbell improved substantially and Bell maintained.
   29. CFBF Is A Golden Spider Duck Posted: July 09, 2008 at 10:45 PM (#2851160)


Hate to say it (I lie) but I called this a couple years ago. Nobody listened. I'm not right all that often, I'd appreciate it if you listened when I am. :-)


What are you talking about? This site was all kinds of skeptical toward Francoeur.
   30. JPWF13 Posted: July 09, 2008 at 10:45 PM (#2851161)
and ~50 games at SS in the bigs, so I think he had the athleticism.


You didn't see those games...

Snyder had no more business playing SS than Stairs had playing 2B when he frist came up (and Snyder wasn't even fat like Stairs...)

Snyder had an arm- that was it- he was slow, he was a slow runner, he moved laterally slowly, wasn't notably flexible, whatever scout/coach thought Snyder was a SS should have been fired for incompetence
   31. Kyle S at work Posted: July 09, 2008 at 11:19 PM (#2851177)
I don't even think Braves fans here thought he was a big star (I sure didn't). I thought he would get better than he has (certainly better than he's played this year) but never thought he was more than an average player at best.
   32. jim in providence Posted: July 10, 2008 at 01:08 AM (#2851354)
McCann is from Athens though.

Can't get there from here?
   33. flournoy Posted: July 10, 2008 at 01:34 AM (#2851400)
Sorry, you don't know what you're missing. I sure hope you don't prefer Gwinnett.


I'd take Gwinnett over Clarke any day. I'm a suburb guy.

Also, since we're dancing around some smack here, am I the only one who thinks Francoeur is somewhat intellectually challenged?


Nope.
   34. TrueNorth Posted: July 10, 2008 at 01:42 AM (#2851408)
That's a titanic plunge in those predictions, not that there was much afloat to begin with. "Benchy le Frenchy,"
   35. J.C. Bradbury Posted: July 10, 2008 at 01:49 AM (#2851418)
If you move to Gwinnett you can send some of your tax dollars directly to Liberty Media shareholders without having to buy a Braves ticket.

I live in Cobb County which is on the northwest side of Atlanta. A drive to Gwinnett ruins my afternoon. A drive to Athens ruins my day...except for the fact that Athens is a pretty cool town.
   36. flournoy Posted: July 10, 2008 at 01:49 AM (#2851419)
It doesn't really look like much of a plunge, save for the playing time. ZiPS says that Francoeur is going to be the same player for the next ten years, and will get very steadily decreasing plate appearances.
   37. flournoy Posted: July 10, 2008 at 01:53 AM (#2851426)
By the way, I don't think Francoeur's career will look like that. He seems way too inconsistent to me to put up the same rates every season like that. I think his performance will fluctuate wildly, even if it might be just between various levels of "bad."
   38. Freeballin' (Tales of Met Power) Posted: July 10, 2008 at 02:07 AM (#2851447)
By the way, I don't think Francoeur's career will look like that. He seems way too inconsistent to me to put up the same rates every season like that. I think his performance will fluctuate wildly, even if it might be just between various levels of "bad."


Well, sure, but ZIPS doesn't really do that.
   39. flournoy Posted: July 10, 2008 at 02:34 AM (#2851491)
Yeah, I know. It was just an off-the-cuff remark since I found his ZiPS consistency so jarring.
   40. Corn On Ty Cobb Posted: July 10, 2008 at 05:36 AM (#2851608)
I find it extremely disturbing that he has no idea how bad he sucks. The Braves are to blame because they've encouraged his wretched approach for years, but for Christ's sake, Jeff. Are you just the biggest dumbass ever?
   41. rb's team is hopeful for the new year! Posted: July 10, 2008 at 02:18 PM (#2851756)
Athens is close enough to be lumped in with Atlanta anyway, though most of us would rather not acknowledge its existence.

You mean most people in athens would rather not acknowledge atlanta's existence? If you mean the opposite, good riddance. Stay away. Athens doesn't want you anyway.
   42. rb's team is hopeful for the new year! Posted: July 10, 2008 at 02:21 PM (#2851762)
As such, I'd hate to lump it into all of those rings of hell that exist OTP. I like to think of it as Atlanta, wastelands and Athens/Chattanooga/B'ham.

I can agree with this statement.

I'd take Gwinnett over Clarke any day. I'm a suburb guy.

This statement, on the other hand, was made by an idiot.
   43. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: July 10, 2008 at 02:28 PM (#2851775)
I find it extremely disturbing that he has no idea how bad he sucks. The Braves are to blame because they've encouraged his wretched approach for years, but for Christ's sake, Jeff. Are you just the biggest dumbass ever?

The biggest dumbass ever? Probably not. Carl Everett did and still does exist. But all evidence suggests that Little Jeffy is not terribly smart, or at least that his intelligence is drastically overshadowed by his ego. I'm virtually certain that Francoeur thinks he is a better baseball player than his buddy Brian McCann, for example. I'm virtually certain that he thinks the contract the Braves offered him - the same arb buy out deal that McCann accepted - was beneath him. I'm virtually certain that he's amazed he's not an All Star by now. Is he stupid? I don't know. He's a jock. He's probably not doing quantum mechanics in his spare time. But that's not the real problem that I see. The real problem is that he's arrogant far beyond his talent.
   44. Tracy Posted: July 10, 2008 at 02:30 PM (#2851778)
and ~50 games at SS in the bigs, so I think he had the athleticism.

You didn't see those games...


Fortunately, no. I was mostly watching the Cubs in the mid 1980s. I'll stand corrected.
   45. bfan Posted: July 10, 2008 at 02:52 PM (#2851799)
"If that were Francoeur's actual career, at what point do you think he would come to terms with the fact that he was not a superstar? I think about 2014, while playing for his fifth or sixth big league team."

Except that no one will want him, and the Braves will insist on paying him the "hometown premium", because of all of those (non-existant) Parkview alums who buy tickets to come to see Frenchie strike-out every game.
   46. bunyon Posted: July 10, 2008 at 03:14 PM (#2851824)
Also, since we're dancing around some smack here, am I the only one who thinks Francoeur is somewhat intellectually challenged? Something about how his lip is always back over his teeth. Maybe he should have taken the full ride to play SS for Clemson.

I have no idea what his IQ is, but I'm pretty sure you can't judge it based on how he looks. Those that think the IQ of an individual can be judged based on facial expression, gender, color, ethnicity, gait, clothing, etc. are themselves displaying a fairly low IQ.

Now, I will agree that his behavior suggests extreme arrogance. Which is actually not related to intellect. I've known some amazingly "smart" people who were so arrogant they significantly damaged their careers.

However, it seems to be taken as an article of faith in sabr circles (at least the primitive ones I frequent) that strike zone judgement is a skill that can be improved, but not dramatically (or did I get this conclusion wrong?). Folks point to low walk numbers in the minors as a good gauge of ability in the majors. Folks say that walk numbers don't change much over a career and that it is rare for a guy with poor strike zone recognition to get better at it. So, my point is, yes, Jeffy has poor strike zone recognition skills. But why is this and his failure to improve seen as such terrible moral or intellectual shortcomings? Blast the Braves all you like for not seeing this and either trying to help him improve or find someone else to fill his spot, but I don't see how you can hold the view that walks (and all that entails) is a skill and one unlikely to improve over time and that Jeffy should be blamed for failing to improve or for being bad at that skill.

As to what he says to the media, would you really respect a player who said, "You know, I'm not very good, I should be benched or, perhaps, released." I wouldn't.

To me the ridiculousness of Frenchy's career/situation is squarely on the Braves organization, not him. He's a below average player (who might be pretty good if he developed some sense of the strike zone but, honestly, I don't expect that of him at this point) who thinks he's better than he his. My guess is pretty much every player ever, including Ruth and Bonds, think they're better than they are. Judge his playing ability as harshly as you like (I do) but that hardly merits judgement of his character or intellect.
   47. flournoy Posted: July 10, 2008 at 03:16 PM (#2851826)
He's still useful as a backup with numbers like those. And I really don't think the Braves will keep him around, and certainly not at a premium, past his shelf life. They've cut ties with a lot of popular players in the past (especially those with high contract demands), and they'll continue to do so.
   48. bfan Posted: July 10, 2008 at 03:26 PM (#2851833)
JF's agents purport to be very aggressive and try and carry out their appearances with a lot of swagger. They purport to have "the next big thing". I really hope Frank Wren doesn't blink. If Wren has any courage and any sense (is there evidence of either, yet?), he will DFA him before laying on him the numbers the agents will insist upon.
   49. flournoy Posted: July 10, 2008 at 03:45 PM (#2851850)
Well, with the way the Braves have marketed Francoeur, Francoeur's agents would be remiss not to talk him up as the next big thing. (Or even the current big thing.) But McCann signed his deal a year and a half ago, right? The Braves didn't give in to Francoeur's contract demands then, and they still haven't. I think the baseball people in the organization understand what Francoeur is. That the marketing department doesn't isn't their fault.
   50. bfan Posted: July 10, 2008 at 03:50 PM (#2851855)
I would hope the baseball people are talking to the marketing people; you really don't want to make the face of your franchise someone you plan to replace in 2 years with some other prospect. By the way, as I understand it, they offered JF a McCann type deal; JF just wanted more. That the Braves could recognize that JF wasn't better than McCann is better than nothing; that they saw JF as McCann's equal doesn't exactly sing out for great baseball intelligence.
   51. Boots Day Posted: July 10, 2008 at 03:53 PM (#2851857)
As to what he says to the media, would you really respect a player who said, "You know, I'm not very good, I should be benched or, perhaps, released."

"I suck right now." -- Billy Wagner, June 12, 2008
   52. shoewizard Posted: July 10, 2008 at 03:55 PM (#2851861)
FWIW, his top Pecota comp heading into this year was Charlie Spikes....so that kind of fits in with Dan's list in # 26
   53. bunyon Posted: July 10, 2008 at 03:56 PM (#2851864)
"right now" being the key. I would expect a player to know things aren't going well. But the opinion around here seems to be that JF sucks, plain and simple (I agree with this sentiment) not "sucks right now". I wouldn't expect a player to ever say that he just isn't quite good enough to be a MLB superstar.
   54. flournoy Posted: July 10, 2008 at 04:06 PM (#2851873)
Would a McCann contract be a bad idea for Francouer, from the Braves' perspective? As I understand McCann's deal, the Braves get McCann's arbitration years for approximately what they would expect to pay anyway, and get his first two free agency years for $15M total. (Plus a club option on the next year.) A $15M two year deal for Francoeur might be pretty steep, but it wouldn't sink the team, and obviously the Braves were banking on Francoeur developing more than he has. (Also, remember to look at 2011-2012 baseball salaries through the baseball inflation lenses.) At the time, I think it would have been a good deal, but not anymore.
   55. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: July 10, 2008 at 04:12 PM (#2851878)
So, my point is, yes, Jeffy has poor strike zone recognition skills. But why is this and his failure to improve seen as such terrible moral or intellectual shortcomings? Blast the Braves all you like for not seeing this and either trying to help him improve or find someone else to fill his spot, but I don't see how you can hold the view that walks (and all that entails) is a skill and one unlikely to improve over time and that Jeffy should be blamed for failing to improve or for being bad at that skill.

Again, I think there's plenty of blame to go around here. The Braves have a nagging tendency to fall in love with toolsy kids who they hope to teach to play baseball. It's a long tradition running through Francoeur and George Lombard to Mike Kelly and any number of other blasts from the past. If you want to concentrate your criticism on that by all means, go for it. Most of the BTF-Braves crowd will agree with you I suspect. But that doesn't excuse Francoeur of his obvious failings in this instance. A player who is hitting worse than Old Ozzie Guillen just doesn't have the right to ##### and moan about being demoted. Period. He had options. He needed to be sent down. He needed to be left down, in fact. I don't mind a player in that situation using the conflict to fuel his desire to improve and return to the bigs. I do mind him acting as if he's entitled to the starting RF position regardless of his actual level of play. Francoeur's behavior reaks of that sense of entitlement and that too is fair game for criticism.

By the way, as I understand it, they offered JF a McCann type deal; JF just wanted more. That the Braves could recognize that JF wasn't better than McCann is better than nothing; that they saw JF as McCann's equal doesn't exactly sing out for great baseball intelligence.

They offered them both the same arbitration buy-outs. I'm not sure that reflect all that poorly on their evaluation skills as an organization. Francoeur presented them with a plethora of natural talent that, if they could just harness it, could turn into super-star performance. That was worth the risk of losing guaranteed money if he flamed out (as he seems to be doing) but it was balanced by the potential reward of Francoeur putting it all together. McCann presented a much better skill set, a clearly more projectable success rate in the majors, but he also was a catcher. Catchers get hurt, wear down, etc. So it wasn't the same risks, but it was a near-equivalent risk to take on a young player like that. The risk of losing the money if he got hurt was balanced by the reward of having an All Star calibre catcher locked up through arbitration at controlled costs.

s/
   56. MM1f Posted: July 10, 2008 at 04:27 PM (#2851886)
55,
Plus since they came up in the organization together, and were drafted together, offering them identical deals avoids wounding any egos.
   57. JPWF13 Posted: July 10, 2008 at 04:35 PM (#2851895)
I'm virtually certain that Francoeur thinks he is a better baseball player than his buddy Brian McCann, for example. I'm virtually certain that he thinks the contract the Braves offered him - the same arb buy out deal that McCann accepted - was beneath him. I'm virtually certain that he's amazed he's not an All Star by now. Is he stupid? I don't know.


I still remember a Braves braadcast from 2 years ago, Mets visiting Atlanta, the Braves broadcasters were talking about David Wright, one said, "he's the Mets' Francoeur", the other said, "maybe, but Francoeur has more ribbies" [at the time], the first one said, "yeah, you're right"

Mainstream Braves fans (not guys like Sam H) have, at least prior to this year, talked about Franchy the way Mets fans talk about Wright...

Frenchy came up in 2005, played well and hit .300 in less than half a year, the next year he hit 29 homers and drove in 103 runs, in 2007 he hit .293 with 105 rbi-

to the mainstreamn fan those are terrific numbers, to the vast majority of Frenchy's peers those are regarded as terrific numbers...

McCann has never driven in 100, his career high in HR is less than Frenchy's... I have no doubt that there are mainstream fans who regard Frenchy as a better player as a result.

Frenchy does not have to be stupid to believe himself to be a great player- equal or better than Wright or McCann, he merely has to be ignorant or intellectually lazy...
   58. JPWF13 Posted: July 10, 2008 at 04:36 PM (#2851896)
I'll throw in another comp, the ages are off by about two years, but Jim Presley.
   59. MM1f Posted: July 10, 2008 at 04:41 PM (#2851898)
I love that a guy's biggest sin is not walking enough and being pissed about a demotion and everyone is going to such lengths to let everyone know how sure they are that, because he doesn't walk enough or didn't like being sent down, that he is a moron or a ########.

Get a grip y'all.
   60. Benji Gil Gamesh Rises Posted: July 10, 2008 at 04:44 PM (#2851902)
Shea Hillenbrand.
   61. MM1f Posted: July 10, 2008 at 04:51 PM (#2851911)
Shea Hillenbrand at least (I think) did some things that were legitimately asshol-ish.

Francoeur really has been a good boy in Atlanta. If he is pissed about being demoted, that is unfortunate, but I think y'all are being ludicrous if you expect a guy who has started almost every game for the 3 years to get the bus ticket to Pearl, MS and say "oh. Of course I'm being sent down. I suck. Its cool. And I'm too stupid to draw walks."
If he wants a couple days to be pissed, or hurt, about things let him be pissed about it. He didn't try to get out of the demotion at all. He went straight down there.
   62. Benji Gil Gamesh Rises Posted: July 10, 2008 at 04:54 PM (#2851916)
I meant the comparison in terms of type of hitter (decent power, very little patience), overrated early on b/c of RBI totals, seemed to think he was a star, etc.
   63. Dizzypaco Posted: July 10, 2008 at 05:11 PM (#2851925)
I meant the comparison in terms of type of hitter (decent power, very little patience), overrated early on b/c of RBI totals, seemed to think he was a star, etc.

There's another important difference between Hillenbrand and Francoeur. I heard a lot of talk when Francoeur came up about how good he was going to be, how good he really was, and so on. He was clearly overrated, and people overrated his chances of being a star.

I personally didn't hear that about Hillenbrand. The sabremetric community has always screamed how overrated Hillenbrand is and was, but I never heard that many people rave about him in the first place, and I live in Boston.
   64. Chris Dial Posted: July 10, 2008 at 05:31 PM (#2851945)
I heard a lot of talk when Francoeur came up about how good he was going to be, how good he really was, and so on. He was clearly overrated, and people overrated his chances of being a star.
Francoeur opened with a hot month, and when the next handful of months were awful and people said "Look how he's hit since that first month", stathead-wannabes started screaming "selective endpoints", or "that first month counts!". Well, it took a while, but it's exposed.
   65. AJMcCringleberry Posted: July 10, 2008 at 05:53 PM (#2851977)
Francoeur opened with a hot month, and when the next handful of months were awful and people said "Look how he's hit since that first month", stathead-wannabes started screaming "selective endpoints", or "that first month counts!". Well, it took a while, but it's exposed.

This isn't a Soto thread.
   66. Greg Maddux School of Reflexive Profanity Posted: July 10, 2008 at 05:59 PM (#2851981)
Whereas real statheads screamed "Speaking of selective endpoints, why are you ignoring everything before his major league debut?" or "That .320 OBP in the Southern League counts!"
   67. king cranium maximus IV Posted: July 10, 2008 at 06:37 PM (#2852043)
Also, since we're dancing around some smack here, am I the only one who thinks Francoeur is somewhat intellectually challenged? Something about how his lip is always back over his teeth. Maybe he should have taken the full ride to play SS for Clemson.

Although, to be fair, the solid hitters for Atlanta don't exactly look like Mensas. Tex looks-wise is a less harsh version of John Rocker, and Chipper always looks like he's got too many teeth for his mouth.
   68. MM1f Posted: July 10, 2008 at 06:39 PM (#2852047)
Baseball for the Thinking Fan, eh?
   69. Walt Davis Posted: July 10, 2008 at 06:56 PM (#2852074)
What are you talking about? This site was all kinds of skeptical toward Francoeur.

Fair enough. I found a thread from 2006 and there was more realism in that thread than I recall from that time. Still, there were a number of folks offering pretty decent comps (Mike Emeigh went with Jose Guillen, which is still not impossible).

This isn't a Soto thread.

not sure what you're saying. Soto by month:

Sep 2007 426/462/745
Apr 2008 333/427/621
May 2008 271/357/510
Jun 2008 250/327/420
Jul 2008 333/382/700

Not a bad month in there. True, he hasn't been able to maintain an OPS>1000. Bastard!!

Alas, there is a "problem" with Soto. His on-contact numbers (career) are 399/717 and those aren't sustainable. If you gave him Mike Piazza's on-contact production (367/650) -- which I'm guessing must be close to best all-time for a C -- with Soto's K-rate, you get an overall BA of 273 and overall SLG of 483. With Soto's walk rate, that's still an OPS comfortably over 800 which is fine with me. But yeah, there's a pretty good chance Soto is heading for a "slump".
   70. Chris Dial Posted: July 10, 2008 at 07:06 PM (#2852109)
Whereas real statheads screamed "Speaking of selective endpoints, why are you ignoring everything before his major league debut?" or "That .320 OBP in the Southern League counts!"
Correct.
   71. Chris Dial Posted: July 10, 2008 at 07:07 PM (#2852110)
not sure what you're saying. Soto by month:
His minor league stats, other than his third trip through AAA weren't good.
   72. AJMcCringleberry Posted: July 10, 2008 at 07:12 PM (#2852126)
not sure what you're saying.

It was a joke, Dial has been going back and forth with some Cubs fans about Soto.
   73. The Good Face Posted: July 10, 2008 at 07:25 PM (#2852158)
Snyder had an arm- that was it- he was slow, he was a slow runner, he moved laterally slowly, wasn't notably flexible, whatever scout/coach thought Snyder was a SS should have been fired for incompetence


In all fairness, Snyder had the strongest throwing arm I think I've ever seen. It was beyond Dunston-esque. He'd have made Ichiro look like an old woman throwing rice at a wedding. I could see how a scout in love with toolsy-ness could be deluded into thinking he could play SS... at least if he didn't actually watch him too long.
   74. Mike Emeigh Posted: July 10, 2008 at 07:28 PM (#2852168)
Mike Emeigh went with Jose Guillen, which is still not impossible


and it's still a fair comp.

-- MWE
   75. Rowland Office Supplies Posted: July 10, 2008 at 07:44 PM (#2852213)
Here's hoping that Frenchy goes on to win a Triple Crown. takes over the Batman role from Christian Bale, records a best-selling album, and at some point...somehow, has the opportunity to slap the Figure Four Leg Lock on David Wright.

And that he steals all of your girlfriends. Like he can. If he wants.
   76. Sexy Lizard Posted: July 10, 2008 at 08:28 PM (#2852319)
re: the appearance of Atlanta players. My father always thought that Greg Maddux looked, in his words, "special", and that he was some sort of idiot savant who could win Cy Young Awards and play pianoa concertos and recite the Billings phone book, but who couldn't tie his shoes or eat with a fork. It took a lot of convincing to get around this.
   77. bunyon Posted: July 10, 2008 at 08:55 PM (#2852376)
I'm really surprised so many people think how you look (or the look on your face) equates to your IQ. I guess people really aren't too bright.
   78. flournoy Posted: July 10, 2008 at 09:20 PM (#2852406)
Spoken like someone who has received the "You're not as dumb as you look" compliment one too many times.
   79. bunyon Posted: July 10, 2008 at 09:28 PM (#2852414)
Spoken like someone who has received the "You're not as dumb as you look" compliment one too many times.

Actually, not as much as I'd have hoped.
   80. Dingbat_Charlie Posted: July 10, 2008 at 09:34 PM (#2852420)
a buddy of mine assigned Maddux the moniker "Professor Squiggy". dead-on, if you ask me.
   81. bunyon Posted: July 10, 2008 at 09:46 PM (#2852429)
Maddux always reminded me of Ari Fleischer. Or, vice versa, really, since I knew who Maddux was 15 years before I knew who Fleischer was.
   82. xdog Posted: July 10, 2008 at 10:03 PM (#2852443)
When I mentioned what I saw as Francoeur's dimness, I meant that he seemed emotionally and intellectually incapable of getting outside himself enough to see what he was doing and not doing. I don't expect him to correspond with John Conway or even to be as witty and engaging as us. I'd be satisfied if he learned how to recognize a slider off the plate and that he can't drive an eye-level FB.

I've never thought him arrogant either, beyond the usual arrogance of an elite athlete who has excelled since his mid-teens.

He's just a kid with special physical skills and with his HS background in Atlanta and his magical debut and yes, his white and suburban face, he's an easy pick for Braves posterboy. I wish him well whoever he plays for. It'd be fine if he could get straightened out soon enough to punch up the Braves' OF for the 2nd half.
   83. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: July 11, 2008 at 12:50 AM (#2852540)
My father always thought that Greg Maddux looked, in his words, "special", and that he was some sort of idiot savant who could win Cy Young Awards and play pianoa concertos and recite the Billings phone book, but who couldn't tie his shoes or eat with a fork.

Your father needs to add "cursing" to the list of things Maddux is/was a savant at. Nobody dropped the f-bomb like Maddog dropped the f-bomb. And it carried for *days.* All the way to the 400 sections. All the way to the end of the TBS empire.
   84. Honkie Kong Posted: July 11, 2008 at 01:11 AM (#2852545)
Francoeur looks very dumb on the field, but his interviews are actually surprisingly smart and self deprecating. Before this hissy fit, he would always talk about how he needs to improve, especially his patience.
I think even in a recent interview, he mentioned how he looked at video of himself and screamed, "What am I doing up there".
Happens to me in MLB 2k8. i seem to know what to do when others are hitting. But when its my turn, I take the most godawful swings.
   85. Honkie Kong Posted: July 11, 2008 at 01:12 AM (#2852546)
And Athens is overrated. I have been there a few times, and it was always meh.

You see lot of UGA people up in Atlanta if you go out clubbing / bar hopping.
   86. flournoy Posted: July 11, 2008 at 01:44 AM (#2852562)
The best thing about Maddux's curses was that he screamed them as soon as the pitch left his hand, before the batter had even swung. It's one thing to drop an f-bomb right after a guy hits a moonshot off of you, but it's entirely different to drop one when the ball is still inches from your fingers.
   87. flournoy Posted: July 11, 2008 at 01:45 AM (#2852563)
Though I actually seem to remember more s-bombs than f-bombs, but my memory might be failing me.
   88. Kyle S at work Posted: July 11, 2008 at 03:57 PM (#2852898)
I'd pick Athens over Atlanta as the city I'd rather go out in... and I live in Atlanta! Athens is great.
   89. Chase Utley, Shooty's Favorite Robot (Joey Belle) Posted: July 12, 2008 at 03:35 AM (#2853757)
Does ZIPS take handsomeness into account?
   90. PerroX Posted: July 12, 2008 at 05:06 AM (#2853820)
In his favor, he's still young.
   91. Robert in Manhattan Beach Posted: July 12, 2008 at 06:16 AM (#2853833)
I always liked Tony Armas Sr. as a comp but now it doesn't look like he'll ever be anywhere near that good.
   92. Rants Mulliniks Posted: July 14, 2008 at 07:10 PM (#2856103)
I would think being selected as the starting RF for the USA in the first World Baseball Classic might have something to do with his over-assessment of his skills on the diamond. I still don't know how he made it on the roster though.
   93. flournoy Posted: July 18, 2008 at 07:14 PM (#2863872)
I thought he was mostly riding the pine during the WBC.

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