Penny for Francoeur?

That’s the rumor, anyway:

The Braves already have made moves to augment their rotation, calling up super prospect Tommy Hanson to make his major league debut on Sunday, after summoning Kris Medlen last month. But Atlanta might not be done adding pitching.

Atlanta is one of the teams in conversation with the Boston Red Sox about veteran right-hander Brad Penny, according to sources, at a time when the Red Sox have been doing their own research on Braves right fielder Jeff Francoeur.

Atlanta already has Derek Lowe, Javier Vazquez, Jair Jurrjens, Kenshin Kawakami, Kris Medlen and Tommy Hanson. Normally I’d counsel against bringing in a seventh starter, but since this is supposed to be for Francoeur, you could put Penny in right field and it would still be a net upgrade.

Hell, Francoeur for Bill James’ belly button lint would be an upgrade.

(Thanks to reader Jake for the heads up)

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  1. Nick Whitman said...

    I can’t imagine Red Sox management being stupid enough to give up anything for Jeff Francouer.  He’s the polar opposite of the kind of player they’re typically interested in.  He shouldn’t even be on their radar.

    He would be just as much of a black hole as Ortiz in the lineup, and there’s certainly no place for him in the outfield.  Penny doesn’t have much trade value at this point, but an all-glove, no-hit backup middle infield guy would seem much more realistic.  And if they’re going for someone to replace Ortiz, someone who can actually outhit him would be nice.

    This would be dumber than the Lugo and Drew contracts.

  2. N said...

    Took the title literally and thought $0.01 seemed a fair price for Jeff. Not sure as much about Brad.

  3. Mark Runsvold said...

    Did it ever occur to anybody (I’m looking at you, Buster Olney) that this doesn’t make sense to either team in any way? The Braves have plenty of pitching. So much pitching that they released a potentially viable rotation option to make room for a stud prospect. The Red Sox have decent outfield depth. They have players in Double-A who could probably hit better than Frenchie. Plus, those players are cheaper and under control for many more years. The Sox are looking for help at short and (likely) at DH. Other than it being true that both teams are looking to move the players in question, there is no reason this rumor should have passed anyone’s smell test.

  4. Craig Calcaterra said...

    Excellent point, Mark.  I don’t understand the world of tips and scoops very much, but I’ve gotten the impression that guys in the reporting business would rather be first than right, so even if there’s a .03% chance of this trade happening, Olney is going to run with it so the next guy doesn’t get it first.

    Lame, of course, but that’s how that business rolls.

  5. Grant said...

    I used to like Olney, but he seems increasingly to care more about being well-known than being good, so I basically ignore him at this point. He’s lame.

  6. Kevin S. said...

    Last week, Neyer blogged about Frenchy to the Sox (link in my name), and it seemed just as crazy then.  I’m not quite sure why the Braves would want Penny (at that point, why not just keep Glavine?), but maybe there’s some kind of face-saving invovled with getting something for the out-machine, as opposed to just DFAing him.  Seems stupid, but maybe that’s it.

  7. Matt J. said...

    I was under the impression that when the Red Sox signed Penny (and Smoltz, for that matter) they were more interested in getting him healthy in order to flip him for some value. Like Shyster points out, though, Francoeur doesn’t really constitute “value.” I always thought it would be Ed Wade or the ilk that the Braves would try to con into trading for Francoeur. I think Theo Ep is too smart for this.

  8. Rob² said...

    The I read this article, it sounds like it was written by the Braves FO.  There’s hardly any mention as to why the Sox would be interested in Francoeur, outside of a passing reference to Boston “doing their own research” on him.

    This is nothing more than wishful thinking by some shill in Frank Wren’s office.

  9. mkd said...

    I’m not sure what the point of even peddling this crap is. If the Braves FO is behind these “rumors”, are they thinking they’re going to maybe trick the Yankees into “stealing” Francoeur from Boston by leaking that the Red Sox are interested?

  10. Nick Whitman said...

    Willingham?  Maaaybe.  I don’t want anything to do with Kearns in a Sox uniform.  Nick Johnson is the guy they should be after, he fits the Sox lineup like a glove.  I’d love to see Adam Dunn, but he would take a lot more than Penny.

  11. Nick Whitman said...

    I’m a Sox fan through and through, but I’m not a blind believer in the front office.  These are the people responsible for the Drew, Renteria and Lugo signings, after all. Whatever their projection systems, Francouer is not a selective hitter and trying to develop him into one seems like a futile effort.  Grabbing him to “develop” him would be a waste of Penny, who could probably get them a decent backup middle infielder or be part of a package for a better slugger.  It’s also another piece to throw in front of Lars Anderson, who has some potential and can actually take a walk.

  12. MJ said...

    @ mkd

    I’m not sure what the point of even peddling this crap is. If the Braves FO is behind these “rumors”, are they thinking they’re going to maybe trick the Yankees into “stealing” Francoeur from Boston by leaking that the Red Sox are interested?

    Yanks have an even worse logjam in the outfield with Matsui/Damon/Swisher/Gardner/Cabrera and Nady on the DL.

    @ N

    Took the title literally and thought $0.01 seemed a fair price for Jeff. Not sure as much about Brad.

    Heh same.

    Maybe the Braves are trying to convince the Sox to just take Failcoer straight up?  And the Sox have to determine if nothing is worth Mr. OBP?

  13. J. McCann said...

    I still think the Sawx might actually have interest in Failcouer.  I’m sure they are way ahead of all of us with projection systems, developing young players and scouts.

    They might figure they can straighten him out, or at least make into a platoon OF/defensive replacement.

    I tell you one thing, if the Sox get him, then they will tell his ass to report to Pawtucket and not Boston.

  14. Steve said...

    As far as J.D. Drew is concerned, check out the value section of Fangraphs.  By the end of this deal the Sox will have made out just fine.

  15. Jack Marshall said...

    Sources with the Red Sox say, simply, “Olney screwed it up.” The story makes no sense at all; acquiring Frenchy goes against Sox philosophy completely. Penny’s going for someone, but not him.

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