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Indians sign Jeff Francoeur

Jan 6, 2014, 7:31 PM EDT

Jeff Francoeur AP AP

The Indians just announced that they have signed outfielder Jeff Francoeur to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training. ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reported earlier this evening that the two sides were close to a deal.

Francoeur, who turns 30 on Wednesday, hit rock bottom last season by batting just .204/.238/.298 with three home runs and 17 RBI over 81 games between the Royals and Giants. His .536 OPS was third-lowest in MLB among players with at least 250 plate appearances. Only Jeff Mathis and Brendan Ryan were worse. And that’s not where you want to be.¬†Francoeur wasn’t much better in 2012, putting up 16 homers and a .665 OPS in 148 games, so his days as a regular are probably over.

The Indians already have a right-handed hitting outfielder with Ryan Raburn, so it could be a challenge for Francoeur to crack the Opening Day roster. And hey, if he ends up at Triple-A Columbus, at least he would have a new best friend close by.

UPDATE: Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that Francoeur will receive a $1 million base salary if he makes the Indians and could earn more with incentives.

  1. spudchukar - Jan 6, 2014 at 7:46 PM

    Time to re-visit the “Seven-Years-WAR”.

  2. jrs45 - Jan 6, 2014 at 7:50 PM

    Oh god it gets worse!

  3. raysfan1 - Jan 6, 2014 at 7:53 PM

    Ooh, Frenchy and Craig in the same state, what fun! I hope he makes the team.

    • unclemosesgreen - Jan 7, 2014 at 5:25 AM

      Are you trying to ruin this for Craig? Frenchy is supposed to play in AAA Columbus so they can have serious Bro times together.

  4. janessa31888 - Jan 6, 2014 at 7:58 PM

    Chris Antonetti doing his dumpster diving again. Sigh. WE NEED A POWER HITTER!!!! Not another guy who hits below .250.

  5. chacochicken - Jan 6, 2014 at 8:08 PM

    Frenchy for Governor of Brohio

    • bigdicktater - Jan 6, 2014 at 8:14 PM

      I thought it was “Snohio”.

  6. jwbiii - Jan 6, 2014 at 8:30 PM

    Delta flies to Columbus but not Cleveland. I think this is an omen.

  7. jrs45 - Jan 6, 2014 at 8:55 PM

    Delta? Who cares?

    • jwbiii - Jan 6, 2014 at 9:57 PM

      When Francoeur played for the Braves, he was a spokesman for Delta. He also had a blog which was comprised of rather boring baseball player type stuff interspersed with obvious Delta ads like: “After the season is over, Catie and I are going to fly Delta to Denver to visit her parents. What’s your favorite Delta destination?”

    • jwbiii - Jan 6, 2014 at 10:14 PM

      Where are my manners? Never talk about a player’s wife without a visual aid.

  8. Old Gator - Jan 6, 2014 at 11:35 PM

    Oh, there he is.

  9. stephenolszewski - Jan 7, 2014 at 12:38 AM

    Gets lucky with Kazmir and Giambi thinks he can do it again and again and again ugh

  10. jrs45 - Jan 7, 2014 at 12:47 AM

    She’s ok I’ve seen better

  11. riverace19 - Jan 7, 2014 at 2:29 AM

    Frenchy has been historically bad… Like in the history of the game… But it shows you that being a good guy and a good teammate can sometimes go farther than stats. He will probably have a monster March-April, make the roster, then revert back to a multitude of 3-32 streaks at the plate.

  12. nymets4ever - Jan 7, 2014 at 9:16 AM

    Let’s go Frenchy!

  13. sportsdrenched - Jan 7, 2014 at 10:18 AM

    Cleveland, I thought you were better than this.

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