ATLANTA - In many ways, Sunday was like so many other days over the past decade for Andruw Jones. He pulled into the Turner Field players' lot in his silver Mercedes S65, walked into the home clubhouse and put on his No. 25 Braves uniform.
This time, though, it was different. Because as much as Jones has tried not to think about his upcoming free agency, he knows Sunday could have been his final home game with the Braves.
"This might be the last game, I don't know," the center fielder said. "This is a business. Anything can happen."
After beating the Milwaukee Brewers 7-4 Sunday, the Braves will have the day off today and then finish the regular season at Philadelphia and at Houston. For Jones, that means just one more week until the start of an off- season filled with uncertainty.
Atlanta has not had any serious contract discussions with Jones' agent, Scott Boras, and it is unclear how aggressively they will pursue him this winter. It has been generally assumed by people both inside and outside the organization that Jones would be too expensive for the Braves to re-sign. And Atlanta now already has a high-price, cleanup hitter in Mark Teixeira.
Still, Jones, 30, will probably be more affordable than expected after a dismal offensive season. With just six games left, he is hitting .220, albeit with 26 homers and 93 RBI.
FRANCOEUR WILL REST: Jeff Francoeur has no interest in being the next Cal Ripken Jr. The right fielder said Sunday that he will likely sit out a game at some point in 2008, citing the fatigue he has felt from playing every game this season.
Sunday marked Francoeur's 320th consecutive game started for Atlanta, dating back to Oct. 1, 2005. It is the second longest active streak in the majors for a player with the same team.
FINAL ATTENDANCE: It hasn't been a particularly successful year for the Braves, but it's been a good year for business at Turner Field. With an announced crowd of 44,088 on hand for Atlanta's home finale Sunday, the Braves finished with a total home attendance of 2,745,207 this season. That marked a seven percent increase from 2006.
Reach Brian Costa at firstname.lastname@example.org.