Jeff Francoeur continues to be Jeff Francoeur

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I’m not sure what’s more pathetic: the fact that the Atlanta news paper keeps running stories about Jeff Francoeur, or the fact that Braves fans like me keep reading them.  Anyway, there was another one over the weekend, and Jeffy unleashed a couple of Jeffy-gems:

Q: Things must be going well on the field, eh?


A: I feel great at the plate.

It’s true! He’s actually average since the trade as opposed to unspeakably awful!

Q: Were you coachable?


A: Shoot, I was willing to try about anything. Ask anybody. Still, someone up
here asked me about patience. I’m like, “Listen, I’m not going to go up
there and walk 70 times a year. So you can either accept me for the player I
am or go get somebody else.”

So the answer is no, you’re not coachable. Please, Mr. Francoeur, try to keep your answers precise.

Q: Do you think the Mets want you to be any different?


A: No, they’re not there for my on-base percentage. It was great to hear
[manager] Jerry Manuel in a team meeting say, “I don’t care about average. I
care about scoring runs, driving in runs and preventing runs.” That’s the
type of guy I am.

Because studies have shown that on-base percentage has nothing to do with scoring runs.

Q: What do you make of criticism that you couldn’t adjust?


A: I’m 25 years old. I came up so early. Most guys don’t get to the big
leagues until they’re 24, 25. I have made a little bit of adjustment on my
swing lately. I’ve spread out a little bit. I’ve gotten a lot of good advice
from Mac [Brian McCann]. Catching me, he was able to see some things.


Q: What did he say?


A: He talked about how I need to get back to what I used to do and that’s
attacking the fastball. If I swing at the slider low and away, so be it,
don’t let that fastball beat you.

God, I love Brian McCann. He tells a division rival that he needs to do more of that which is his greatest weakness (i.e. go after everything aggressively, even if it means chasing garbage) and the moron does it.  That’s why he’s my favorite Brave.

Oh well, we could shoot Francoeur fish in this particular barrel all day, but I do have a life to get to.

Marlins defeat the Mets, then pay their respects to Jose Fernandez on the pitcher’s mound

MIAMI, FL - SEPTEMBER 26: Miami Marlins players all wearing jerseys bearing the number 16 and name Fernandez honor the late Jose Fernandez before the game against the New York Mets at Marlins Park on September 26, 2016 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images)
Rob Foldy/Getty Images
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The Marlins were somehow able to muster up the strength not only to play Monday night’s game against the Mets, but also win it convincingly one day after losing Jose Fernandez in a tragic boating accident. The Marlins and Mets helped pay tribute to Fernandez prior to the start of the game as outlined here.

When the game started, the Marlins came out of the gate with a bang. Dee Gordon homered in his first at-bat, then the club hung a four-spot in the second inning. They tacked on two more in the third inning to chase starter Bartolo Colon and take a commanding 7-0 lead. The Mets chipped away for two runs in the fifth on an Asdrubal Cabrera two-run homer and tacked on one more in the eighth, but ultimately fell short by a 7-3 margin.

Gordon finished 4-for-5 with the homer and two RBI. Justin Bour went 3-for-3 with a single, double, triple, and a walk along with an RBI and two runs scored.

A.J. Ramos, who closed out the win, placed the ball on the pitcher’s mound for Fernandez. The Marlins huddled around the mound and said a prayer. The players huddled closer to the rubber on the mound, then left their hats behind as they retreated to the clubhouse as fans at Marlins Park chanted, “Jose, Jose, Jose.”

In a post-game interview, Gordon called his first-inning home run “the best moment of my life,” as NBC 6 Sports reports.

Indians defeat Tigers, clinch AL Central for first division title since 2007

CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 7: Roberto Perez #55 of the Cleveland Indians hits an RBI single during the second inning against the Houston Astros at Progressive Field on September 7, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Jason Miller/Getty Images
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The Indians beat the Tigers 7-4 at Comerica Park on Monday night, clinching the AL Central for their first division title since 2007. Starter Corey Kluber lasted only four innings before exiting with right groin tightness, but the Indians were able to overcome the adversity.

Coco Crisp gave the Indians their first two runs with a two-run home run in the second inning off of starter Buck Farmer. The Tigers would promptly tie the game on a two-run homer by J.D. Martinez in the bottom half of the inning.

In the fifth, an RBI double by Jason Kipnis and a sacrifice fly by Mike Napoli put the Tribe back on top 4-2. The Tigers answered once again with a Miguel Cabrera RBI single in the bottom half to make it 4-3.

Roberto Perez homered for the Indians in the top of the top of the seventh, and Cabrera answered with another RBI single in the bottom half to keep it within one run at 5-4.

The Indians tacked on another insurance run in the eighth on three consecutive two-out singles by Crisp, Rajai Davis, and Perez. Carlos Santana then hit what should have been the final out of the eighth inning, but J.D. Martinez botched the catch, allowing the Indians’ seventh run to score.

Cody Allen shut the Tigers down in the bottom of the ninth, protecting the 7-4 lead for his 30th save of the season.

The last time the Indians won the AL Central, their starting lineup featured a 28-year-old Victor Martinez, a 25-year-old Jhonny Peralta, a 24-year-old Grady Sizemore, and a 26-year-old CC Sabathia. It’s been a long time.

The American League playoff picture still isn’t set yet, so the Indians will be intently watching the final week of the season to see who will be their playoff opponent.