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Francoeur's arm is pretty awesome

Mar 17, 2010, 9:45 AM EDT

Francoeur Mets.jpegI slam Jeff Francoeur a lot for the things he does poorly, but I should be fair and note one thing he does really well, and that’s kill runners from the outfield.  MLB.com has a feature on that today.  Most interesting quote comes from Andre Dawson, who was rumored to have a bit of his arm himself once upon a time:

“You gain a reputation that you probably deserve, and no one wants to
test your arm. But sometimes I think your reputations get better than
your arm. I could still throw when I retired, but I think some
third-base coaches who hadn’t seen me throw for a while gave me too
much credit.”

As Dawson would no doubt agree, this is one area where being overrated is a wonderful thing. Better than killing a high percentage of runners at the plate is not having anyone try to advance on you in the first place.  Francoeur probably gets that benefit of the doubt a lot these days, and will continue to do so even as his arm strength inevitably declines with age.

But you kind of hope some will still test him. Francoeur threw out two guys at the plate a week ago Sunday when I was in Port St. Lucie watching the Mets-Nats game. By far the most exciting plays in the game. I was in the press box and thus couldn’t cheer, but it took every ounce of strength I had to keep from doing so. And that’s with one of my least favorite players on my least favorite team.  If it had been Jason Heyward throwing dudes out I probably would have ‘asploded.

  1. Tommy2cat - Mar 17, 2010 at 10:24 AM

    Attended Mets v. Cards in PSL on Monday. Francouer doubled-up runner who strayed too far from 1st base. Later in the game, Cards held runner from 2nd at 3rd base on ground single to rightfield. Francouer threw an absolute pea in the face of a gusting wind to hold the runner at 3rd. Probably saved the game, though few would notice.
    It wasn’t only his arm, it was lining up the throw and accounting for unpredictable wind gusts. Stunning.

  2. Adam - Mar 17, 2010 at 11:25 AM

    I worked for the Braves Myrtle Beach affiliate the year Francouer played for them. We had to be there early to set up the play area for the kids, loved watching him practice his throws home.

  3. enough already - Mar 17, 2010 at 11:32 AM

    You had me until the very last paragraph. I know it hurts, Craig, but he’s moved on and so should you.

  4. BC - Mar 17, 2010 at 12:13 PM

    Outfield arms are overrated. Vince Coleman led the league in outfield assists one year and he couldn’t break a pane of glass.

  5. enough already - Mar 17, 2010 at 12:52 PM

    Guys who lead with assists usually have lousy arms. Everyone knows it so everyone tries to take advantage.

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