Braves' Francoeur to minors
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The Atlanta Braves decided their hometown favorite needed to get away from home — and away from the major leagues — to work his way through the worst slump of his career.
Outfielder Jeff Francoeur, hitting only .234, was sent to Double-A Mississippi yesterday and told he'd be recalled within three weeks.
Braves general manager Frank Wren and manager Bobby Cox said the move is not a demotion.
"We look at it as stepping back for a few days and decompressing and getting his game going again," Wren said. "It gives him the ability to do that."
Francoeur was told of the decision after he was booed at home Thursday night when he went 0 for 4. He hit .206 in June and is 1 for 12 in three games this month.
Francoeur has taken hours of extra batting practice but has been unable to match the power he showed in 2006 when he hit 29 homers or the improved discipline at the plate when he hit .292 last season.
Facial surgery for Barrett: San Diego catcher Michael Barrett will require surgery for facial fractures and may be out six weeks.
The Padres placed Barrett on the 15-day disabled list yesterday and purchased the contract of catcher Nick Hundley from Triple-A Portland. The 24-year-old Hundley made his major league debut last night at Arizona.
Barrett left Wednesday night's game at Colorado in the third inning after fouling a ball off his face.
Athletics: Oakland placed reliever Keith Foulke on the 15-day disabled list yesterday with inflammation in his right shoulder. Foulke, who is 0-3 with a 3.81 ERA in 26 appearances, had some irritation in his pitching shoulder the last few weeks and told manager Bob Geren on Thursday that he couldn't throw.
Indians: Cleveland closer Joe Borowski, last year's American League saves leader, was designated for assignment yesterday. The right-hander blew his fourth save in 10 chances Wednesday against the Chicago White Sox, and was 1-3 with a 7.56 ERA in 18 games this season.
Reds: Cincinnati pushed back Aaron Harang's start from today to Tuesday because of stiffness in his forearm. The Reds will activate right-hander Josh Fogg from the disabled list to start against the Washington Nationals, manager Dusty Baker said yesterday.
Rockies: Colorado placed first baseman Todd Helton on the 15-day disabled list for just the third time in his career. "It's definitely a relief to get a chance to feel better and hopefully be productive when I get back," said Helton, who has a strained lower back.