"There's no doubt I'm feeling some pain," said Francoeur, folding down his lip to reveal swelling and bruising. "Luckily, it didn't mess up my jaw."
Francoeur planned to head back to Orlando on Sunday to rest. He said that he could be back in a game on Wednesday or Thursday after the swelling goes down.
"It scared the heck out of me," Braves manager Bobby Cox said. "I thought something had to break. Thankfully, he'll be all right."
His teammates were equally as frightened.
"You hate to see that, especially this close to the end of Spring Training," said Tom Glavine, Sunday's starting pitcher, who saw the blood trickling down Francoeur's face as he walked back to the dugout. "All indications are that he's OK and nothing seems to be broken. So he certainly dodged a bullet."
Gregor Blanco pinch-ran for Francoeur and went to right field in the bottom of the second inning. Francoeur was batting .314 with a homer and eight RBIs this spring.
"He's right at the top of the list, as far as guys you just don't think you can afford to have out at any point in time," Glavine said.
Francoeur is no stranger to taking high-velocity balls to the face. In 2004, when Baseball America named him the Braves' top prospect, he was hit in the face when squaring around to bunt on July 7. The ball deflected off his bat and into his right eye socket, sending him to the disabled list until Aug. 14.
After the injury, a metal plate was placed underneath his right cheek bone (Francoeur said that the plate threw the doctor for a loop during Sunday's X-ray, when it picked up the plate). On Aug. 19 2004, five days after coming off the DL, he was promoted to Double-A Greenville. He finished the season a combined .276 with 18 home runs and 61 RBI for Class A Myrtle Beach and Greenville.
Francoeur said he knew that Sunday's plunking was not as severe as the one from four years ago.
"I knew right away it didn't do what it did [in 2004]," he said. "Luckily, it hit me lower."