Friday, December 10, 2004

Franco remains a Brave

Julio Franco came to camp the past two seasons a non-roster invitee, with assurances from management that he'd be with the club when Spring Training ended. Due to recent interest in Julio's services by a couple of other teams (including the Marlins), management quickly signed him to a one-year, $1 million dollar contract yesterday. Although Franco is the oldest player in the Bigs (he's 46), his 2004 numbers weren't too shabby: .309, 57 RBI, 6 HR. He'll continue to platoon at first base with Adam LaRoche during the 2005 season.

I'm a bit surprised by the amount of the contract; I'm not surprised that the Braves wanted him back enough to offer it. Even at the ridiculous age of 46, he's in incredible physical condition and still a productive player. With a club house filled with young guys, it's important to have solid, veteran leadership- and you can't get much more "veteran" than Julio. Besides- it's nice for Bobby Cox to have someone close in age to chat the time away on those long road trips...

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