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The similarites between Jason Heyward and Jeff Francoeur

Feb 24, 2010, 12:45 PM EDT

Francoeur SI cover.jpgToday’s Buster Olney column is actually pretty good as it relates to Jason Heyward’s expectations and the media and all of that, but I can’t help but think his opening paragraphs were specifically intended to give Braves fans a heart attack:

Jason Heyward was born in Georgia, was a first-round draft pick of the Atlanta Braves,
was seen as a hometown-kid-makes-good star since high school, has been
given high marks for his makeup, and is on the verge of breaking into
the majors amid outsized expectations.

Jeff Francoeur knows something about all that. He was born in Georgia. He was a first
round pick of the Braves. He was seen as a
hometown-kid-makes-good-star, was given high marks for his makeup, and
he broke into the majors amid outsized expectations.

I like to slam Francoeur whenever I can because he made me cry big tears when he was in a Braves uniform, but I have to be fair here and note that he gives some very good advice to Heyward in the column about how to handle it all.  For as big as city as Atlanta is, it’s a pretty provincial place when it comes to its athletes, so if Heyward has even a fraction of the start Francoeur had when he broke into the league, you can bet people will go kinda crazy.

  1. Ben - Feb 24, 2010 at 1:06 PM

    Wow, that would certainly be interesting if Heyward crashes like Francouer. I’m hoping for his sake that he doesn’t though. On a related note, I kind of think that Stanton could be a bust as his numbers took a severe drop-off when he got promoted.

  2. BC - Feb 24, 2010 at 1:26 PM

    I’d forgotten about the Francoeur SI cover. Thanks for digging it up.

  3. zac - Feb 24, 2010 at 1:59 PM

    Can Heyward, you know, play baseball? Because that’s an important part the Braves seemed to forget to ask with Francoeur.

  4. Church of the Perpetually Outraged - Feb 24, 2010 at 2:07 PM

    Have no fear:
    Failcouer – 138BBs in 706 Games
    Heyward – 105BBs in 238 Games
    but then again OBP isn’t on the scoreboard so who cares about it.

  5. Joey B - Feb 24, 2010 at 2:07 PM

    I remember the Francouer phenomenon. Good stats at the age of 21 made it easy to overlook the 58/11 K/W ratio. Even in his second year, with the 29 HRs at age 22, it was easy, not quite as easy, but still easy enough to ignore the K/W ratio of ~ 6:1.
    You’d think someone could just sit down with him and do nothing but learn the strikezone.

  6. Old Gator - Feb 24, 2010 at 2:46 PM

    Yeah, folks will go crazy about him until the first unretouched photo of some teenager looking up at him with adoring eyes while he signs a baseball for her, and all the three hundred pound anorexics come pouring out of the woodwork to revile the incipient sexism of a conclusion that anyone without really bad cataracts would come to from that expression on her face. George Carlin was right, of course; it doesn’t take a whole lot of imagination to piss off a feminist.

  7. Ralph Kramden - Feb 24, 2010 at 4:01 PM

    They don’t put OBP on the scoreboard where you’re from? They do at Fenway.

  8. Grant - Feb 24, 2010 at 10:09 PM

    Yeah, Heyward knows how to take a pitch. I bet he’ll be fine.

  9. Old Gator - Feb 24, 2010 at 11:27 PM

    If Wayne Huizinga hadn’t paid for the scoreboard, the Feesh probably wouldn’t even have one. Scrooge McLoria would have the Chihuahua sitting on a K-Mart lawn chair out in center field holding up oak tag signs with the pitch count and scores.

  10. James - Feb 25, 2010 at 2:00 AM

    That was a joke response referencing something Francouer once said about the importance of OBP

  11. Evan Rocks !!! - Mar 23, 2010 at 1:35 AM

    Jason Heyward . . . . Jeff Francouer ????
    Talk about creating a contoversy where none exsist.
    Tell me again when Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are breaking up.
    Jason Heyward’s situation reminds me more of Ryan Howard.
    Everyone knew Ryan Howard was AWESOME !!!
    But he had Jim Thome in front of him.
    Everyone knows Jason Heyward is AWESOME !!!
    But he has his lack of exspierence in front of him and maybe Melky Cabrera.
    Jeff Francouer ???
    Up untill he went on his little terror, he was just another prospect.
    Just like after he went on his little terror, he’s just another player.
    SI covers are fun . . . They don’t mean anything though.
    Who has more SI covers, Tom Brady or Tom Bradys wife ???

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