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Toward a Genealogy of Jeff Francoeur Home Runs

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Jeff Francoeur hit a three-run home run against the Red Sox last night. Let's take a moment to appreciate, not only that particular home run, but some preceding dingers from Frenchy as well.

The future of the Phillies captured in one image
The future of the Phillies captured in one image
Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

At this point, you've likely heard the primary fun fact regarding Jeff Francoeur's three-run home run off of Rick Porcello in last night's win against the Red Sox, the gift to professional baseball of god himself. Since his last major league home run on June 16th, 2013, Francoeur suffered through 660 homer-less days (6 more days and we really would have been on to something). That he only logged 28 major league plate appearances in 2014 certainly provides some explanation for that drought.

Of the last 7 major league bombs Frenchy has dropped, two have come off of last night's nemesis, Rick Porcello. In what follows we will celebrate Jeff Francoeur's Lucifer-spiting home run through a barrage of GIFs reaching back to that next-most recent shot off Porcello. Perhaps we will reach some understanding of Jeff Francoeur qua power threat as a happy side-effect. So, without further ado: to the GIFs!

Last Night:

June 16, 2013 off Rays P and then-future Phillie Roberto Hernandez (nee Fausto Carmona):

May 30, 2013 off Cardinals P Mitchell Boggs:

April 10, 2013 off Twins P Josh Roenicke:

October 2, 2012 off Tigers P Brayan Villarreal:

September 29, 2012 off Indians P and current Phillie Jeanmar Gomez:

April 8, 2012 off Tigers P Rick Porcello:

And, if that weren't enough to sate your craving for dinger GIFs, behold the following:

Frenchy Comp

(Note: A faster version can be found here)

As you might have gathered from the preceding GIFs, Francoeur seems to hit most of his dingers off of pitches in the area between the middle of the plate and his body. That visual observation appears to be correct, as the following chart of all of Francoeur's 140 career homeruns attests. (Last night is excluded as the Pitch F/X data has not been uploaded to BrooksBaseball)

Frenchy career HR

So, where did Rick "Cy Young" Porcello throw a meaty slider to Frenchy last night? Right in the heart of that happy zone. (The blue circle designated as "3" represents the pitch in question)

And that fateful pitch from September 2012? A belt-high sinker inside:

So, what should we make of all this? At the very least, opposing pitchers should approach the inner half of the zone with care. To draw such a conclusion though might be to wrongly approach the current situation. The proper approach is likely celebration over the fact that the Phillies scored, hit a home run, and won a game of baseball. Let's enjoy these moments, i.e., 4-run offensive explosions, whenever we can. The Phillies won; Jeff Francoeur is happy; the world is happy.