Braves’ Freeman dodges injury bullet, X-rays negative

ATLANTA — Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman received a scare on Wednesday night when he was once again hit by a pitch on the left wrist. The team announced tests came back negative and Freeman avoided what could have been another prolonged stint on the disabled list.

Freeman exited Atlanta’s game against the Philadelphia Phillies in the eighth inning after being plunked by reliever Hoby Milner. Freeman was struck by an 89 mph fastball, grimaced and immediately departed the field. The pitch hit Freeman in virtually the same spot as the one that landed him on the disabled list in 2017.

Freeman underwent X-rays, but the results weren’t immediately made available following the game. He was reevaluated on Thursday morning and the team has deemed him day-to-day, but he was right back in the starting lineup in the series opener against the New York Mets.

After running the initial tests on Wednesday night, Freeman went home with the indication from doctors that he had avoided refracturing the same wrist that cost him 44 games last season. He underwent CT scans on Thursday morning to confirm there were no breaks.

Despite two strikingly similar incidents inside a calendar year, Freeman is not planning to change his stance or utilize any radical wrist guards. He believes it’s simply a risk that every hitter runs each time they step in the box.

“There’s nothing you can really do,” said Freeman. “This is how I hit. It’s how I stand and I’m not changing it. I’ve just got to get out of the way.”

Freeman is batting .288 with two home runs and 12 RBI in 17 games this season. He is among the major league leaders in walks, on-base percentage and wins above replacement.

Additionally, Freeman said he has already heard from Milner, who apologized for hitting him with an errant pitch.

“Hoby actually already texted me,” said Freeman. “He reached out, so I really appreciated that. It was very nice of him to do that. Obviously, it was a 2-2 count and he tried to go in. I understand; it’s just part of the game.”

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