Freeman with the Atlanta Braves
|Atlanta Braves – No. 5|
September 12, 1989 |
Fountain Valley, California
|September 1, 2010, for the Atlanta Braves|
(through August 22, 2016)
|Runs batted in||485|
|Career highlights and awards|
Frederick Charles "Freddie" Freeman (born September 12, 1989) is an American-Canadian professional baseball first baseman for the Atlanta Braves of Major League Baseball (MLB). He has been with the Braves organization since he was drafted by them out of high school in 2007. He made his MLB debut in 2010. He hit for the cycle on June 15, 2016 against the Cincinnati Reds.
Freeman's parents are both from Canada. His mother is from Toronto, while his father is from Windsor. He therefore also holds Canadian citizenship in addition to American citizenship. He has stated that he would like to play for Canada at the World Baseball Classic. Freeman attended El Modena High School in California, where he was a third baseman and a pitcher. As a senior in 2007, Freeman hit for a .417 batting average and had a 6–1 win-loss record as a pitcher. The Orange County Register named him its 2007 player of the year. He signed a letter of intent with Cal State Fullerton.
The Atlanta Braves selected Freeman in the second round, with the 78th overall selection, of the 2007 Major League Baseball draft. Freeman signed with the team for $409,500, foregoing his college scholarship. He was the Braves' fifth-best prospect heading into the 2009 season, according to Baseball America, and the 11th-best prospect overall in their midseason top 25.
Atlanta Braves (2010-present)
Freeman was called up to the Braves on September 1, 2010, as part of the team's September call-ups, and made his major league debut that same day. On September 5, 2010, he got his first career hit off of Florida Marlins pitcher Clay Hensley, and on September 21, 2010, he hit his first home run off of Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Roy Halladay. He played 20 games with the Braves and batted .167. Freeman was not a part of the Braves' playoff roster.
Freeman began the 2011 season as the starting first baseman for the Braves. After a slow start, his performance improved and he had been mentioned as a strong candidate for rookie of the year. On July 4, 2011, Freeman hit two home runs against the Colorado Rockies, for his first multi-home run game. Freeman was the first Braves rookie to reach 50 RBIs by July 18 since Hank Aaron accomplished this feat in 1954. He was the named NL rookie of the month for July; during that month, Freeman led all Major League rookies with 38 hits, a .362 batting average, and a.433 on-base percentage in July 27 games. He also led all NL rookies with six homers and 17 runs. His 18 RBIs tied for the most in the NL among rookies.
In August, Freeman and Dan Uggla became the first members of the Braves to have concurrent twenty game hitting streaks in the modern era. Freeman's streak ended at 20 games on August 7. Freeman finished the 2011 year batting .282 with 32 doubles, 21 home runs, and 76 RBI in 157 games played.
Freeman finished second to teammate Craig Kimbrel in the NL Rookie of the Year balloting. Kimbrel and Freeman were the first teammates to finish first and second since 1989, when the Chicago Cubs’ Jerome Walton and Dwight Smith came in first and second. The only other time two Braves finished in the top five, the organization was still located in Milwaukee—Gene Conley was voted third-best rookie of the 1954 season; Hank Aaron came in fourth.
In 2012, Freeman had an NL-leading nine sacrifice flies along with batting .259 with 33 doubles, 23 home runs, and 94 RBI in 147 games played.
In 2013, Freeman was selected as a finalist for the 2013 Major League Baseball All-Star Game Final Vote, where he won with record-setting total of 19.7 million fan votes, but was unable to play because of a thumb injury suffered three days prior to the game. Freeman finished the 2013 season with a .319 batting average, along with 23 homers and 109 RBI in 147 games played.
On February 4, 2014, Freeman agreed to an eight-year, $135 million extension. Freeman was named an All-Star for the second time in 2014, and played the last three innings of the game. He led the team in batting average and on base plus slugging percentage in 2014. Freeman also set a franchise record for innings played. During a game against the Philadelphia Phillies on June 27, 2014, Freeman hit a three-run homer off of Kyle Kendrick to left center field that was caught by broadcaster Tom McCarthy. Freeman finished the 2014 year by appearing in all 162 games batting .288 with 90 walks, 43 doubles, 18 home runs, and 78 RBI.
On June 17, Freeman was listed as day-to-day with an injury to his right wrist originally sustained during a June 13 game against the New York Mets. He missed the June 18 game against the Boston Red Sox ending a streak of 234 consecutive games played, which led the majors at the time. Freeman was officially placed on the 15-day disabled list on June 23, and received a platelet-rich plasma injection soon afterward. He was eligible for activation on July 3, but did not return to action until July 28, three days after he was removed from the disabled list. For the season, Freeman hit for a .276 batting average with 18 home runs and 66 RBIs in 118 games, his shortest season since 2011.
Freeman's powerful swing, in which he moves his shoulders slightly before lowering his hands, has been described as "unorthodox" and compared to a tennis forehand. His hand-eye coordination and ability to adjust to pitchers from one plate appearance to the next have also drawn praise.
During a 2014 winter storm, Freeman was stuck in a traffic jam that had no plans of moving. Freeman stayed stuck for hours until former teammate Chipper Jones arrived on his ATV and rescued Freeman successfully. In January 2016, the Atlanta Braves announced a "Chipper Rescues Freddie" bobblehead night for the upcoming season. This will be used as a promotional night for the franchise.
- "Freeman looking to play for Canada at WBC". Rogers Communications. Retrieved 24 July 2013.
- Fryer, Steve (June 11, 2007). "Freeman a shot in the arm". Orange County Register. Retrieved September 19, 2014.
- Callis, Jim Badler; Lingo, Will; Manuel, John; Badler, Ben (2008). Baseball America Prospect Handbook 2008. Simon and Schuster. p. 41. ISBN 9781932391190.
- Ballew, Bill (December 15, 2008). "Atlanta Braves top 10 prospects". Baseball America. Retrieved September 2, 2010.
- "Midseason Top 25 Prospects". Baseball America. July 9, 2009. Retrieved September 2, 2010.
- Bowman, Mark (September 1, 2010). "Freeman thrust right into Braves' lineup". MLB.com. Retrieved October 11, 2015.
- "Scott Cousins delivers walk-off win with 1st career hit after teammate is hit in on-deck circle". ESPN.com. Associated Press. September 5, 2010. Retrieved October 11, 2015.
- Whicker, Mark (September 22, 2010). "El Modena's Freeman gets 1st homer - off Halladay". Orange County Register. Retrieved October 11, 2015.
- "Derek Lowe to start Game 1 for Braves". ESPN.com. October 5, 2010. Retrieved November 15, 2011.
- "Braves have keeper in Freddie Freeman". ESPN.com. July 27, 2011. Retrieved November 15, 2011.
- Mark Bowman. "Prospect Freeman gets called to The Show". MLB.com. Retrieved September 2, 2010.
- David O'Brien (July 19, 2011). "Freeman gets 50 RBIs as quickly as rook named Hank". Blogs.ajc.com. Retrieved November 15, 2011.
- "Freeman named NL's top rookie for July". MLB.com. Retrieved November 15, 2011.
- "Uggla, Freeman both push hit streaks forward". MLB.com. Retrieved November 15, 2011.
- "Dan Uggla's hit streak at 28 as Braves edge injury-stricken Mets". ESPN.com. August 7, 2011. Retrieved November 15, 2011.
- "Streak ends, but Freeman's focus on winning". MLB.com. Retrieved November 15, 2011.
- "Official site of the Baseball Writers' Assn. of America". BBWAA.com. Retrieved November 15, 2011.
- November 14, 2011, by David O'Brien. "Kimbrel wins NL Rookie of Year, Freeman runner-up | Atlanta Braves". Blogs.ajc.com. Retrieved November 15, 2011.
- "Freeman, Delabar win All-Star spots". ESPN.com. Retrieved 12 July 2013.
- "Braves extend Freddie Freeman". ESPN.com. February 4, 2014. Retrieved February 4, 2014.
- Bowman, Mark (February 4, 2014). "Freeman, Heyward sign; $130M for first baseman?". MLB.com. Retrieved February 4, 2014.
- Rogers, Carroll (July 16, 2014). "Freeman, Kimbrel do their part but NL loses All-Star game". Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved September 30, 2014.
- Mark, Bowman (September 27, 2014). "Freeman sets Braves season record for innings played". MLB.com. Retrieved September 28, 2014.
- "Phillies announcer Tom McCarthy catches Braves home run while calling game in center field, throws ball back". New York Daily News. Associated Press. June 28, 2014. Retrieved April 18, 2015.
- Collazo, Carlos (June 18, 2015). "Freeman out at least 1 game with sprained wrist". MLB.com. Retrieved January 31, 2016.
- Bowman, Mark (June 19, 2015). "Braves being cautious with Freeman". Retrieved January 31, 2016.
- Bowman, Mark (June 22, 2015). "Right wrist injury forces Freeman to DL". MLB.com. Retrieved January 31, 2016.
- Bowman, Mark (June 25, 2015). "Freeman (wrist) receives PRP injection". MLB.com. Retrieved January 31, 2016.
- Bowman, Mark (June 30, 2015). "Freeman likely out through All-Star break". MLB.com.
- Bowman, Mark (July 28, 2015). "Regaining timing, Freeman launches homer". MLB.com. Retrieved January 31, 2016.
- Cobb, David (July 25, 2015). "Freeman back with Atlanta after brief rehab stint". MLB.com. Retrieved January 31, 2016.
- "Freddie Freeman says right wrist is finally pain-free". ESPN.com. Associated Press. January 30, 2016. Retrieved January 31, 2016.
- Rohan, Tim (April 21, 2015). "Freddie Freeman Is Another Mets Tormentor, on a Far Different Braves Team". New York Times. Retrieved October 4, 2015.
- "Braves' Freeman hopes to honor late mom, play for Canada". ESPN.com. Associated Press. April 18, 2015. Retrieved April 18, 2015.
- Bowman, Mark (May 11, 2012). "Freeman's late mother always in his thoughts". MLB.com. Retrieved April 18, 2015.
- "Salvationist Roots". Priority! Magazine. Salvation Army. 13 (1). 2011. Retrieved April 18, 2015.
- Ho, Rodney (February 12, 2015). "TV briefs: Freddie Freeman's wife on 'Say Yes to the Dress,' TBS's 'Meet the Smiths,' TNT's 'The Librarians'". Atlanta Journal Constitution. Retrieved April 10, 2015.
- "Chipper Jones aids Braves' Freeman". ESPN.com. January 29, 2014. Retrieved January 31, 2016.
- Townsend, Mark (January 14, 2016). "Own a Chipper Jones, Freddie Freeman snow rescue bobblehead". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved January 31, 2016.
- "Braves' 2016 bobbleheads feature Chipper Jones-Freddie Freeman ATV rescue". Fox Sports. January 12, 2016. Retrieved January 31, 2016.
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