One of the perennial stars of these mid-2000s Braves teams was Julio Franco, who had been a crucial bench piece for Atlanta since returning from Korea in 2001. Franco played over 100 games a year for the Braves from 2002 til 2005, which is a pretty bold claim for a guy in his early to mid-40s, who had played alongside Toby Harrah, Gorman Thomas and Bert Blyleven as a rookie. After a strong 2004, '05 was a step back for Franco, who hit .275 with 42 RBIs, including a second-act-high 9 homers, in 108 games. This would be his last full year in Atlanta, but he'd come back in 2007 for a stint that Topps would also fail to document.
Tomorrow, we stay in the same year, but cover a lot of very strange additions to the fold in Milwaukee.