Freeman: Mr. O’Brien Explains.
On the Braves’ last road trip, a national baseball writer and a St. Louis writer both mentioned to me that Freddie Freeman would probably be in their top five for National League MVP, and both said it with a tone of surprise.
FreddieFree has that way with people who don’t see him play every day. His performance is so consistent and strong, yet so understated and devoid of flash, that voters look at his season numbers and watch him play defense and think to themselves, why come this guy isn’t mentioned more as a top MVP candidate?
But I’ve got a feeling that enough others will say that when it comes to voting, that when they look at his body of work they’ll have no choice but to put Freeman in the top five on this year’s ballot. I know he’d be my Braves MVP right now, and the only one who’d be even close would be Craig Kimbrel.
...Defensively, teammates will tell you he saves numerous errors with his stretches, both horizontal – seriously, how does he do the splits so often without hurting himself? – and vertical, reaching up with his considerable wingspan (he’s 6-foot-5).
Few current first baseman pick balls as well as he does, and he’s got one of the best arms I’ve seen on a first baseman, which enables him to start more successful 3-6-3 double plays than most.
Best hitter and strong defender at a key position on the team with baseball’s best record? Yeah, I’d say that warrants at least top-five MVP consideration.
Posted: September 03, 2013 at 02:05 PM | 78 comment(s)
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