Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Why, oh why, do so many people want tennis lessons all of a sudden? Is it the emergence of Andy Roddick, the guy with a 150mph serve and a shoulder that can't last that much longer? Could it be the eventual decline of Zen Master Andre Agassi, who is saving himself for one last hurrah? Or perhaps Anna Kournikova might still win that elusive singles title?

Anyway, quit bugging me so much about tennis lessons.

So I promised to do a little story about a friend of a friend who's a great prospect for the Braves.

The friend is Derek, and the friend of a friend is Jeff Francoeur:

Says Baseball Prospectus:

2003: "Selected by the Braves with 23rd overall pick in 2002, Francoeur got a $2.2 million bonus, the biggest the Braves had ever given. He then went to the Appalachian League and tore it up, inspiring comparisons to Dale Murphy. We'll have to see more before we'll sign on to something like that, but he hasn't yet ruled it out."

2004: "Francoeur didn't overwhelm the league in his full-season debut at Rome, but for a guy who played mostly football in high school, it was an impressive start. His power and wheels are for real, and the scouting reports on his defesns are better than the DTs would suggest. He'll need to learn how to handle breaking pitches, and improve his approach at the plate in general, but he's got time. According to David Camerson, who studies these things extensively, Francoeur also has the hottest girlfriend in the entire minor leauges."

Derek could probably tell you more about this guy, but from what I remember, he's just a natural athlete. I think he played...cornerback? safety? in high school. Maybe Derek will correct me on that. But yeah, he's gonna be good. And he's 20 years old.

The Astros lost 5-3 last night; Miller only gave up 5 hits and a walk in 6 innings, but 2 HR's. Lance Berkman had all 3 RBIs but Hidalgo and Ensberg went a combined 0-for-7 and a late double switch by Jimy backfired as Jose Vizcaino booted a grounder to 3B which led to 2 runs.

Tonight: Tim Redding vs. Matt Morris

Tim needs a solid start. To his credit, he hasn't looked frustrated or angry yet this year, despite some defensive lapses behind him. There have been whispers of arm trouble surrounding Morris, and his velocity is down. We should do some damage.

Tomorrow I'm going to try and convince my brother to write up a little summary of his latest ultimate frisbee tournament, because it's incredible.

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