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Still no long-term deal; Braves renew Francoeur's contract
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KISSIMMEE, Fla. — The Atlanta Braves renewed outfielder Jeff Francoeur’s contract for the second year in a row Monday after failing to agree on terms on a long-term deal.

With less than three full years in the big leagues, Francoeur is not eligible for arbitration until 2009. The Braves have always taken a hard line in negotiations with players who lack that bargaining chip, and they made no exception for one of the team’s most popular players.

Terms of the new deal were not immediately available, but Francoeur likely will make about $450,000 this year. He was paid $427,500 last season after the Braves renewed his deal in similar fashion; he went on to bat .293 with 19 homers and 105 RBIs.

Francoeur, who grew up in suburban Atlanta, had no hard feelings about the renewal, and there’s still a chance the two sides will come to terms on a long-term deal before the end of spring training.

The Braves made such a deal last spring with Brian McCann, signing the All-Star catcher to a $26.8 million, six-year contract before he was eligible for arbitration.

In other moves, the Braves agreed to one-year deals with catcher Brayan Pena, first baseman Scott Thorman and pitchers Peter Moylan, Jeff Bennett and Anthony Lerew and Peter Moylan. They now have their entire 40-man roster under contract for 2008.

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