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Sunday, October 13, 2019

David Freese, 2011 World Series MVP with Cardinals, retires after 11 seasons

David Freese, the 2011 World Series MVP with the St. Louis Cardinals, has retired after 11 major league seasons.

Freese, 36, announced his retirement in a tweet Saturday, saying he will “never stop thinking about the days I got to be around such wonderful people playing the game.”

Freese spent the past two seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers and also played for the Los Angeles Angels and Pittsburgh Pirates, but he will be best known for his postseason heroics in St. Louis, where he started his major league career in 2009 and played five seasons.

He was a career .277 hitter and even better in the postseason, with a .299 average.

Oddly figures, given how much we’ve been throwing his name around in the last week or so.

 

QLE Posted: October 13, 2019 at 12:11 AM | 24 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: david freese, retirements

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   1. Red Voodooin Posted: October 13, 2019 at 01:22 AM (#5890040)
His name will continue to be thrown around every October.
   2. Walt Davis Posted: October 13, 2019 at 03:41 AM (#5890047)
161 OPS+ in his last season.

I was thinking how much I like seeing Howie Kendrick have some late-career success (and postseason glory). Nothing about Kendrick particularly I just kinda like when good not great players find a second wind and become useful part-timers. Following his 87 OPS+ at age 32 in 2016, Kendrick looked like a goner. Instead a 127 OPS+ (career 109), 4 WAR, 1 WAA in 800+ PA.

Freese is in the same sort of boat. A late-bloomer who was average at best, you figure he'd disappear in his early 30s ... instead 10 WAR, 3.5 WAA over 5 seasons at ages 32-36.
   3. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: October 13, 2019 at 04:28 AM (#5890049)
When the time comes, Freese should get a 17-foot-tall tombstone so they can carve this into it.
   4. ajnrules Posted: October 13, 2019 at 04:42 AM (#5890051)
Rangers fans will forever curse his name but I gotta admit he had a decent career outside of that one postseason.
   5. My name is RMc and I feel extremely affected Posted: October 13, 2019 at 08:41 AM (#5890057)
161 OPS+ in his last season.

Which apparently is the sixth-best ever for a final season, minimum 180 PA:

1) Ted Williams, 1960 (190 OPS+)
2) Shoeless Joe Jackson, 1920 (172)
3) Barry Bonds, 2007 (169)
4) Joe Adcock, 1966 (167)
5) David Ortiz, 2016 (164)

(There was also a guy named Henry Moore, whose one season in the Union Association in 1884 yielded a 163 OPS+. Never played again, and went back to San Francisco, where he died in 1902.)

EDIT: If we're discarding the 19th century and including only guys who qualified for the batting title:

1) Jackson
2) Ortiz
3) Will Clark, 2000 (145)
4) Mickey Mantle, 1968 (143)
5) Happy Felsch, 1920 (143)
6) Buzz Arlett, 1938 (1931)
7) Steve Evans, 1915 (138)
8) Frank Huelsman, 1905 (135)
9) Frank Schulte, 1918 (134)
10) Bill Keister, 1903 (133)
   6. Howie Menckel Posted: October 13, 2019 at 08:45 AM (#5890058)
Adcock quit to take a job managing the Indians.

who knows about the others?
:)
   7. Nasty Nate Posted: October 13, 2019 at 08:51 AM (#5890059)
161 OPS+ in his last season.

Which apparently is the sixth-best ever for a final season, minimum 180 PA:

1) Ted Williams, 1960 (190 OPS+)
2) Shoeless Joe Jackson, 1920 (172)
3) Barry Bonds, 2007 (169)
4) Joe Adcock, 1966 (167)
5) David Ortiz, 2016 (164)
If Nelson Cruz retires this offseason, he would drift back slowly into this list.
   8. Ziggy is done with Dominican discotheques Posted: October 13, 2019 at 11:15 AM (#5890072)
On the whole, an okay player.

But that game. That was the best game that I've ever seen. I'll remember Freese because he was such a central part of it, even if I forget a million other players who were better, on the whole, than he was.
   9. Nasty Nate Posted: October 13, 2019 at 04:55 PM (#5890117)
I think he's the only non-pitcher to win LCS and WS MVP in the same year.
   10. greenback slays lewks Posted: October 13, 2019 at 05:32 PM (#5890126)
When the time comes, Freese should get a 17-foot-tall tombstone so they can carve this into it.

And they should put the monument on the grassy knoll that's part of the batter's eye in Busch-3. Put it right on the spot where the game-winning home run landed, because there's not much else you can put in a batter's eye.
   11. Sit down, Sleepy has lots of stats Posted: October 13, 2019 at 08:17 PM (#5890154)
Put it right on the spot where the game-winning home run landed, because there's not much else you can put in a batter's eye.
I’ve been lobbying for a lawn gnome rally squirrel to be placed there since 2012 but somehow it hasn’t caught on.
   12. Sit down, Sleepy has lots of stats Posted: October 13, 2019 at 08:21 PM (#5890155)
But that game. That was the best game that I've ever seen. I'll remember Freese because he was such a central part of it, even if I forget a million other players who were better, on the whole, than he was.
Im on my cell phone so I can’t look up the details but IIRC Freese had the single-game highest WPA in postseason history that game, and pretty high in the all time list, but the crazy thing was that Berkman was also on the top 5 or 10 highest WPA performances on the same team in the same game. Just unreal.
   13. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: October 13, 2019 at 09:52 PM (#5890183)
#7 can’t imagine that Cruz will retire. Has there been talk to that effect?
   14. Der-K: at 10% emotional investment Posted: October 13, 2019 at 09:55 PM (#5890184)
Not that I know of
Twins picked up his option, fwiw
   15. PreservedFish Posted: October 13, 2019 at 10:02 PM (#5890187)
#7 can’t imagine that Cruz will retire. Has there been talk to that effect?


It was a reference to Cruz's awkward misplay of Freese's clutch triple during that one special game.
   16. SoSH U at work Posted: October 13, 2019 at 10:02 PM (#5890188)
That was a joke about Cruz's effort on the first of those plays that made Freese a WS legend.

   17. Eric J can SABER all he wants to Posted: October 13, 2019 at 10:29 PM (#5890213)
Im on my cell phone so I can’t look up the details but IIRC Freese had the single-game highest WPA in postseason history that game, and pretty high in the all time list, but the crazy thing was that Berkman was also on the top 5 or 10 highest WPA performances on the same team in the same game. Just unreal.

I believe Berkman's figure was #3 all time (although I might just be thinking of World Series games - he trailed Freese and Kirk Gibson). And yet, nobody remembers Berkman's part in the game at all, because there's only so much narrative to go around.
   18. Sweatpants Posted: October 13, 2019 at 11:44 PM (#5890245)
I think he's the only non-pitcher to win LCS and WS MVP in the same year.
Willie Stargell was the MVP of the 1979 NLCS, World Series, and regular season.
   19. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: October 14, 2019 at 12:31 AM (#5890265)
The David Freese Game is one of the most memorable ball games of my lifetime.

   20. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: October 14, 2019 at 10:14 AM (#5890333)
Freese was a lot of fun to watch while he was on the Pirates, and I hope retirement treats him well.

As a guy who's been dealing with depression for a long time, I also appreciated his willingness to speak about his struggles in that area.
   21. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: October 14, 2019 at 10:14 AM (#5890334)
Willie Stargell was the MVP of the 1979 NLCS, World Series, and regular season.


And all without making the All-Star team!
   22. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: October 14, 2019 at 11:40 AM (#5890353)

Thanks guys. Much like that ball and Nelson Cruz, the joke went over my head.
   23. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: October 14, 2019 at 12:01 PM (#5890359)
Willie Stargell was the MVP of the 1979 ... regular season.

... and was famously not among the top 20 NL players that year.
I always assumed he must've gone on an amazing tear or had some clutch hits or something at the end, but Wilver Dornel slashed .229 / .327 / .440 over the last two months; OPSed .669 over the last 10 games with no obvious clutchiness as the Pirates finally came back to win the division.
Narrative is a hell of a drug.
   24. SoSH U at work Posted: October 14, 2019 at 12:13 PM (#5890361)

... and was famously not among the top 20 NL players that year.
I always assumed he must've gone on an amazing tear or had some clutch hits or something at the end, but Wilver Dornel slashed .229 / .327 / .440 over the last two months; OPSed .669 over the last 10 games with no obvious clutchiness as the Pirates finally came back to win the division.

Narrative is a hell of a drug.


Those were the We Are Family Bucs, and Pops was, well, Pops. Those pillbox cap stars weren't going to give themselves out.

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