Francoeur's struggles at the plate have earned him a break from the lineup, and manager Ned Yost expanded on the benefits of such a break.
"It gives you an opportunity to spend some time in the cage and work on some areas you need to work on, plus it kind of cleanses your mind a little bit, because it gets you to take a step back and relax a little bit if you allow yourself to do it," Yost said.
Francoeur did make a late appearance on Thursday as a pinch-runner for Billy Butler in the 10th inning, but the Royals walked off with a win in the 11th before he got a turn at the plate.
In the four games Francoeur was held out of the lineup, his replacement, Jarrod Dyson, went 8-for-14 with two doubles, a triple, two runs scored and a pair of RBIs.
When asked if he could envision a platoon situation between Francoeur and Dyson, Yost said it was a possibility.
"The thing about this game is that in order to be successful, you've got to be productive. And if the production's not there, then yeah, it could become a platoon situation. I don't think we're there yet, but [Francoeur's] a guy that we counted on a lot for production this year," Yost said. "I think this little bit of a break is going to help him get back to where he was. It's not been from lack of trying, but the bottom line is -- for all of us -- is that we step on the field and we produce. If we're a pitcher, if we're a hitter, if we're a fielder, if we're a baserunner, if we're a coach or if we're a manager, production and winning ballgames is all that matters up here."
Yost said that Francoeur would start Friday's game against Rangers lefty Matt Harrison. Yost continued to give his rationale for why other slumping Royals, past and present, have been allowed to continue to play every day, while Francoeur is getting time off.
"There is a certain element of development that goes on, which is why [Eric] Hosmer gets a longer leash or [Mike Moustakas] gets a longer leash or [Alcides] Escobar got a longer leash last year. We're trying to get them into a position where they can be consistent producers," Yost said. "But the bottom line is are we getting the job done as a team and are you getting the job done as an individual?"