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Francis sets deadline for surgery

Updated: February 4, 2009, 2:23 PM ET
By Jerry Crasnick | ESPN.com

Colorado Rockies starter Jeff Francis, bothered by persistent soreness in his left shoulder, has set a Feb. 19 deadline to determine whether he will need exploratory surgery that could sideline him for much of the 2009 season, his agent said.

Francis, a 17-game winner for Colorado's 2007 World Series team, dipped to 4-10 with a 5.01 ERA last season and missed 10 starts because of inflammation in the shoulder.

Francis recently underwent an MRI, which revealed no structural damage. ...

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