Uggla, then Francoeur. Who’s next on the alumni hit parade?

A Turner Field triple for Frenchy. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

A Turner Field triple for Frenchy. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

A Turner Field triple for Frenchy. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

A Turner Field triple for Frenchy. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Jeff Francoeur, now with Philadelphia, entered Monday’s game at Turner Field hitting .169 with four RBIs and five extra-base hits. Against the team that drafted him, nurtured him and dumped him, he went 4-for-5 with a double, a triple and two RBIs.

If you thought, “Well, this looks familiar” … that’s because it was. One week earlier, Dan Uggla made his post-Braves return carrying a .114 batting average with one RBI and two extra-base hits, entering in the fifth inning only because Yunel Escobar, yet another alum, had been spiked. Over the next 2 1/2 games, Uggla would go 5-for-11 with eight RBIs and three extra-base hits, the most notable a game-winning three-run homer with one out in the ninth.

Oh, yeah. Almost forgot. The winning pitcher in last night’s game was Aaron Harang, who worked for the Braves (quite well) last season.

Once the toast of his hometown, Francoeur was dumped in 2009 — traded to the Mets for Ryan Church, to be precise — and is now on his seventh big-league team; Uggla was jettisoned last summer after 3 1/2 seasons of massively diminishing returns; Harang was allowed to leave as a free agent because the Braves didn’t want to pay the going rate. (Which turned out to be $5 million for one year, or $500,000 less than the Braves are paying Trevor Cahill, already banished to the bullpen.)

Nobody would seriously suggest the Braves were wrong to cut ties with Francoeur or Uggla. (We can argue about Harang, though.) The greater point is that the Braves, who started 5-0 but have lost 14 of 21 since, aren’t very good, and they dumped so many big names this offseason that they’ll be bumping into many more alums. They’ll see San Diego, which employs Craig Kimbrel, Justin Upton and the foot-rehabbing Melvin Upton Jr., next month. They’ll see St. Louis, which employs Jason Heyward, in July.

Unless the Braves make the World Series, there’s no chance they’ll see Houston, for whom Evan Gattis has begun to hit. (He started the season 0-for-20.) He had four homers and eight RBIs in the first-place Astros’ weekend sweep of Seattle.

Reader Comments 1

41 comments
DawgNole
DawgNole

Assaulted by their alumni--again.

Just another of the many reasons--sad but accurate--the city long ago acquired the unenviable label of "Losersville."

GeorgeJetsen
GeorgeJetsen

The Braves, Falcons, Hawks, and Thrashers (when they were here) are fully accustomed to bad things happening and as fans we know to always expect the worst.   The moment Uggla was released you knew it was just a matter of time before he came back and burned us.  The sad part is Uggla would still be whiffing nightly had he not been released.  That said the Braves are the most successful of the ATL teams but managed only 1 WS title out of 5 trips and somehow found a way to lose the last 8 WS games they appeared in.   That's ATL karma for you and it spares no team.  Took Falcons 33 years to finally get to a Superbowl where they proceeded to get boat raced and returned the following year to their usual losing ways.  Speaking of losing ways it took them 43 years to have consecutive winning seasons which is still hard to believe even possible.  Hawks are a pathetic bunch as well including an ownership group of  absolute imbeciles, signing a guy who gave fans the middle finger to a max contract, and zero appearances in the Eastern Conference Finals -forget the NBA Finals- since moving to ATL.  The Thrashers had questionable support from the same group of  imbecile owners but could only manage one trip to the playoffs in 11 seasons and never won a single playoff game.   Some say the karma spreads as far as Athens where Mark Richt continues to invent new ways to get less out of his top 10 recruiting classes and avoid NT game appearances while other SEC teams rack up National Titles . 

DawgNole
DawgNole

@GeorgeJetsen

You forgot to mention the Flames--yet another of the city's pro sports teams with a remarkably miserable record of postseason accomplishments.

braves for life
braves for life

simple, we dont have everyday line-up players period..still experimenting the players.same mo  same mo. last years'Mark do something chipper is the answer to our problem braves headcoach.

JacketDetective
JacketDetective

I hated to tell the Braves salesman on two occasions that I was not going to renew my 3 seat 20 game package since the support folks worked hard to provide a very good fan experience.

Should the mood somehow strike me to go again this year, I am sure there will be great deals aplenty on various re-sell sites.

I agree with Mark's earlier column that this team was young and did not need to be blown-up. A trade here and there maybe, but not what our dynamic twosome did. 

Not resigning Harang clearly shows their lack of baseball acumen.

They could have rewarded a player that did well for us and who would have been someone where we actually knew what we were getting.

Acquiring Cahill reveals just how dumb they are.

BTW is Markasis really worth 44 million over 4 years?

Fans of other teams, no doubt, love what the GMs did.

Tickets so cheap they can have their get-togethers at the game instead of at some bar.

They may outnumber Braves fans by the end of the season.


Ersatz
Ersatz

In honor of all these former barves finally finding their swing and launching grand slams every other at bat, the 27-story Applebee's in barvesworld is launching a "Cover Your Butt and Cry in Your Beer" special, paid in full by cobb taxpayers.  The next time a washed-up former barve bats .800 with 8 RBI's against the barves, head on down to barvesworld, the center of the universe apparently, to enjoy unlimited smoked pork butt and brewskis, along with the world famous tater skins and babyback ribs that barves fans have come to know and love after each shutout loss.  The barves front office hogs and cobb political fat cats thought this would be a gesture of good faith, albeit a rare one, in exchange for all the cobb tax dollars they've been embezzling all along to light their cigars and wipe their butts.

moboman
moboman

Throw him some curves and it won't happen, why fastballs?  Its the only thing he can hit.

RafeHollister
RafeHollister

@moboman He had hits on 3 mediocre curveballs.  You are right the 0-2 FB down Peachtree that was his first hit got him going and out of his funk.  A curveball in the dirt would have probably struck him out.  


Franceour's problem is the same forever, he swings at too many pitches out of the strike zone.  So what do we do, throw him strike after strike.  Every year a new team says they are going to make him more selective.  Never works!  If he swung at strikes only, he would hit .300, but he can't help himself, he just swings and swings and it you give him three tries in the strike zone, he probably will hit one of them, duh.



TomGaff
TomGaff

@moboman It's not just Frenchy(Franceour) and Popeye(Uggla) that has trouble with curve balls, a lot of ML players have the same issues! I do think Frenchy has gotten a little more selective on pitches to hit but Uggla has to show more than one series to convince me.

Da_Mick
Da_Mick

Be that as it may, I have no regrets, whatsoever, getting rid of either Uggla or Francoeur.  It took us long enough to resign ourselves that each had to go.  They're bound to get some hits here and there, but it's actually surprising that either is still in the major leagues.

Birdhair
Birdhair

There are more holes in Bradley's arguments than holes In a stop sign in west end. Bradley backed the failing Frank wren until the very end, but he cannot explain why the braves are an absolute complete mess and getting drilled by losers like Uggla and Frenchy and dominated by pitchers like Aaron harang. Bradley says that he backed wren because during wren's tenure the braves had the most regular season wins of any team during a 3.5 year stretch out wren's 7 year tenure. Bradley ignorantly refuses to acknowledge that wren Walked into a gold of young talent and that wren quickly ran this organization into the ground. Bradley's "analysis" is smply viewed as a laughingstock now.

TomGaff
TomGaff

Just for the record, Jordan Schafer CF (fan favorite) of now of the Minnesota Twins went 3 for 3 last nite also. We let Schaf go for nothing to make room for BJ(aka Melvin) Upton to play CF every day. We all know how that turned out. We had to move Kimbrel(closer) to rid ourselves of him!

CarrollSanders
CarrollSanders

@TomGaff Let's be fair--I hate Melvin as much as anyone, and I celebrated the day we were finally rid of that piece of garbage.  That said, Schaffer got his chance here and sucked.  We offed him for Micheal Bourn (widely considered a fleecing).  We then re-acquired Schaff and everyone was asking WTF.  He came back and showed some signs of improvement.  I do wish we could've hung onto him, but you cannot blame his departure on the acquisition of BJ.  Instead, you should blame his suckiness for us getting BJ in the first place.

AnsweredTHIS
AnsweredTHIS

@TomGaff 

Hate to break it to you but Schafer is hitting .232 this year...he wont hit until he comes back to Atlanta on the visiting team...

TomGaff
TomGaff

@AnsweredTHIS @TomGaff I bet you at the end of the season Schaf is hitting around .270? Just like Gattis, he started slowly 0 for 21, now he is hot, 5 HRS in last 6 games, 18 RBI's  but still around .200 BA from terrible start! Is anyone on Braves have 18 or more RBI's?

TomGaff
TomGaff

@AnsweredTHIS @TomGaff I think Schaf is the better option for us in CF dollar wise! Maybin has surprised every one with the long ball, decent average, great speed and very good D, makes around $7M per season. Schaf decent average, good speed, good D, makes around $1M per season. The biggest difference I see is Maybin can share time in lineup and be effective, while it seems Schaf needs to play almost every day to be effective! I hated to see Schaf go when he was not given every day chance to play and show his skills. Both are good base stealers, by the way!!

UWreckMeBaby
UWreckMeBaby

Coming soon, JUp hits grand slam, MelUp goes 4-4 in his season debut and makes a diving catch in CF; Kimbrel strikes out the side in the 9th as the Padres romp over the Braves.

mdet
mdet

@UWreckMeBaby Bud Black is NOT an idiot...Melvin Upton is not going to get in the lineup.

Getting_Older
Getting_Older

@UWreckMeBaby I will take MelUp going 4-4 against us if it means he is not on our team.  Even if he costs us the games against SD, at least those will be the only ones he can lose for us.

DforDawgs
DforDawgs

It's all in fun. Let these guys have their 15 minutes on us. We will get better over the next 2 years.

CarrollSanders
CarrollSanders

I was at the game last night and wondering why in the h3ll was KJ not playing when he's actually on a good streak?!  BC he needed rest?!  Dude is what, mid-30's?  And we're what, a month or 6 weeks into the season and he's maybe played half the games?!  Come on!!  He did the same thing with AJ last weak and he has been ice cold ever since.  The manager really is in over his head.  And batting Simmons 2nd is beyond absurdity--anyone with any horse sense for the game can just look at him swing and see that--never mind the multitude of double plays.  Put him in an RBI role like 5th or 6th and LEAVE him there.  Put a contact guy like Callaspo or Peterson in the 2 hole and LEAVE him there!!  My goodness how can a professional mgr be so blind to such common-sense, obvious little things?!?  Hell, it took him the first month of the season to stop batting EY .150ish hitter) lead off for us!  Good grief.

parabrave
parabrave

@CarrollSanders No Carol; put Simmons back at 7th, Markakis should be a 2 or 3 ala Prado.  However since we don't have a legit leadoff man or a legit cleanup man we are stuck with this lineup.

CarrollSanders
CarrollSanders

@parabrave @CarrollSanders I am content with the lineup as currently constructed EXCEPT that Simmons should be a lower-middle order hitter(5th-7th).  At the two-hole, you need someone with a more controlled, balanced swing geared toward contact as dictated by the situation.  I believe that Callaspo is ideal for this spot, but Peterson or even AJ or Kelly Johnson would look good there.  Simmons is too wild with his swing--he's practically upside-down on his follow through.  To wit, yet ANOTHER double play last night :-/

DamonH
DamonH

Jup is going to hit them hard I'm guessing and of course they're bad, everyone already knew that before the season even started

58Supersports
58Supersports

Good read Mark but what's the answer? 

Need to fire JS, Cox and Fredi first... then what.

DawgNole
DawgNole

@58Supersports

After 48 years of mostly the SoS, it doesn't appear that there IS an answer. Certainly not a legit one.

monty1
monty1

Those two guys are terrible hitters. Bottom percentile I the league, but it does go to show the human mind can do some amazing things when it comes to facing former teams that got rid of u.

TomGaff
TomGaff

@monty1 Give Frenchy(Franceour) credit, he does not seem to swing at any thing throw now. Puts the bat on the ball better, in my opinion! Hope he continues to do well with the Phillies?

DrPhill
DrPhill

We have seen a lot of bad baseball in Atlanta over the years. What makes this current run more offensive is the Cobb County Scam with $350 a night rooms at the Omni Hotel and $300 dugout seats. The Braves have effectively priced themselves out of attendance for most of the fan base, and Atlanta fans have shown little patience for uninspired, bad baseball.

58Supersports
58Supersports

@DrPhill  Cobb Co is not running the Braves, blame JS, Cox,  McQuirk,  plus inept manager. You don't blame Atlanta for all the sorry teams you blame the CEO, GM, Manager.

twelveofthirteen
twelveofthirteen

Just goes to show how bad our pitching really is. Worst in the majors for those two to hit it like they both are doing this season. Just embarrassing for the fans and people who actually care. To think management came out and said with a straight face before the season that this team would pitch and field is a joke and they should be ashamed.

KatieR620
KatieR620

Maybe don't throw fastballs down the middle of the plate to guys who can't hit curveballs.


What we've seen this year is bad pitching. Cahill shouldn't even be on a major league roster much less be making 5 million dollars.  

Joe Tess' Mom
Joe Tess' Mom

J-Up and Kimbrel will be here early June. I expect they will bring it.

Iluvnutella
Iluvnutella

Scheurholz and Cox need to step away and let the Braves figure this thing out for themselves.

This is one unholy mess. And to think we coulda had Showalter managing instead of this Cox frump Fredi.

AlwaysReady
AlwaysReady

Frenchy Returns

Parkview High School's Finest

gobige
gobige

Surely this is no surprise: management dumped a chunk of good players for for guys no one wants (cheap players who weren't on winners and don't have the experience to help others know how to get it done).

Uggla gave us one of the greatest homers in recent memory at Philly last year in the 9th inning-he can deliver heroics from time to time.. Francoeur was just a blip on the radar. One thing that's not a blip: these guys are going to lose a lot of games this year.

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  1. […] post addressed a few former Atlanta Braves — Uggla, Francoeur, Harang — who’d done well at the expense of the current Atlanta […]