You’re not even past the first sentence of Terez A. Paylor’s K.C. Star item welcoming Jeff Francoeur to the Royals when the former Braves/Mets/Rangers RF’s smile is mentioned prominently. It’s a winning smile, too, just so long as your definition of winning has nothing to do with winning baseball games (or getting on base very often). Perez seems willing to give Francoeur the benefit of the doubt when he claims he turned down other suitors in favor of the Royals GM Dayton Moore because he fancies himself a role model.
“I don’t look at this as a one-year thing, and I told Dayton that today,” said Francoeur, a 26-year-old outfielder who signed a one-year, $2.5 million contract last week. “I don’t want to have a great year, say ‘see ya’ and go play somewhere else.”
“I want to be here when it turns around.”
“When I was 21 years old, I had mentors like John Smoltz and Chipper Jones, guys that showed me how to do it,” said Francoeur, who understands the expectations that come with being a big-time prospect. “Here, you’ve got a lot of 21- or 22-year-old guys who are ready to come up and be stars for years. Hopefully I can help them out.”
Royals Review’s Will McDonald tried listening to the above comments and concludes that Moore, “is not only bad an evaluating baseball players, he’s bad at identifying people more generally.”
“Francoeur’s career has been an abject failure. He, without qualification, has not lived up to expectations. He has not been a winner. He has not handled failure well. He has not handled benchings well. What has he done well? If anything, he’s pretty clearly a bad example for young players. His example says precisely this, ‘live off the hype as long as you can, never change, and wait for an old scout to sign you years later.'”