Jeff Francoeur, a two-sport star at Gwinnett’s Parkview High School, has long been a fan favorite in Atlanta.
Francoeur was part of a group of rookie players, affectionally known as the “Baby Braves,” who made their debut in Atlanta during the 2005 season. The Braves recently re-signed a Francoeur teammate from that era, Brian McCann.
Playing for the Atlanta Braves from 2005-09 and 2016, Francoeur also had seven major league stops and one memorable late detour in 2014 to Triple-A El Paso.
Francoeur and his wife, Catie, who he met at Parkview and married in 2007, have three children. They live in Suwanee.
“Frenchy,” as he is most often called, is now poised to become the new face of the Braves’ television broadcasts, replacing Joe Simpson as lead analyst. Here is a look at his journey with the Braves:
June 4, 2002
Francoeur was selected by the Braves out of Parkview with the 23rd overall pick of baseball’s amateur draft. Francoeur, a two-sport star at Parkview, was recruited by Clemson to play football.
Aug. 4, 2002
Francoeur was assigned to the team’s advanced Rookie League club in Danville, Virginia, where he played 38 games and hit .327 with 8 home runs and 31 RBIs.
July 6, 2005
Francoeur is promoted to the majors.
July 7, 2005
Francoeur hits a three-run shot to center field for the first hit of his Major League career (in the second game of a double header against the Chicago Cubs at Turner Field).
Aug. 29, 2005
Sports Illustrated cover anoints Francoeur “The Natural: Atlanta rookie Jeff Francouer is off to an impossibly hot start. Can anyone be this good?”
Nov. 7, 2005
Francoeur finishes third in N.L. Rookie of the Year balloting after batting .300/.336/.549 in 67 games, with 14 home runs and 44 RBIs
May 13, 2006
Francoeur hits a walk-off grand slam against the Washington Nationals – the first walk-off home run and grand slam of his career.
Oct. 1, 2006
Francoeur becomes the fourth Brave to play in all 162 games of a season. He hit .260 with 29 homers and 103 RBIs in his first full season in the majors.
Nov. 6, 2007
Francoeur leads the league in outfield assists with 19, earning his only career Gold Glove at right field.
May 20, 2008
Streak of consecutive games played ends at 370 as Francoeur sits out the second game of a double header against the New York Mets
July 4, 2008
After hitting .121 with a .183 on-base percentage and just one extra-base hit in 18 games, Francoeur is optioned to Double-A Mississippi where he is reunited with manager Phillip Wellman.
Francoeur tells the Atlanta Journal-Constitution: “This has really put a damper on my relationship with the Atlanta Braves.”
July 7, 2008
After a rash of injuries the Braves recall Francoeur, three days into his minor league assignment. He hits .245 with a .303 on-base percentage and 3 homers the rest of the way in Atlanta.
July 10, 2009
Francoeur is traded to the New York Mets for outfielder Ryan Church.
Aug. 31, 2010
A member of the Mets, Francoeur goes 1-for-3 with a sacrifice fly against the Braves at Turner Field. After the game, he is traded to the Texas Rangers. It will be three seasons until he returns to play in Atlanta – with the Kansas City Royals.
Feb. 22, 2016
Braves sign Francoeur to a minor league contract. “It was time to come home,” Francouer says as he reports to spring training camp. Francoeur returns to Atlanta after seven major league stops and one memorable late detour in 2014 to Triple-A El Paso.
April 4, 2016
Aug. 24, 2016
Braves trade Francoeur to the Miami Marlins, in a three-team deal that included the Texas Rangers. The Braves get minor leaguer Dylan Moore from the Rangers and minor league catcher Matt Foley from the Marlins.
Francoeur hit .249 with seven home runs and 33 RBI in 99 games with Atlanta.
May 12, 2017
After playing in 1,481 games, Francoeur retires a .261 career hitter with 1,373 hits, 160 home runs, 698 RBIs.
Fox Sports Southeast announces that Francoeur will join the “Braves Live” pregame and postgame shows as an analyst, with the possibility of working up to an announcer role in future games.
June 5, 2017
Francoeur makes his debut as an analyst on Fox Sports Southeast in a Monday night game between the Braves and Phillies.