Right wrist injury forces Freeman to DL
MRI shows no structural damage; Braves hope he'll only miss a couple of weeks with bone bruise
WASHINGTON -- Freddie Freeman's right wrist injury was significant enough for him to be placed on the disabled list Tuesday. But the Braves are cautiously optimistic he will need just a couple of weeks of rest to recover from the bone bruise that has caused his recent right wrist discomfort.
While the Braves and Freeman were comforted that Monday's MRI exam showed no structural damage, there is uncertainty regarding how long he will be sidelined with the bone bruise. The veteran first baseman would be eligible for activation July 3. But as of Tuesday, it would be optimistic to assume he could return on that date.
"We've had a couple of those [bone bruises] and it takes a while," Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said.
The Braves filled Freeman's roster spot by recalling Joey Terdoslavich, who was sidelined for nearly two months after he suffered a bone bruise when he landed awkwardly on his left wrist during a March 21 Grapefruit League game.
Freeman was fortunate that his ailment did not come as a result of contact. He simply started feeling discomfort while taking batting practice before a June 14 game against the Mets at Citi Field.
"Hopefully we can get him back sooner than later," Gonzalez said.
This ailment will likely prevent Freeman from earning a third consecutive All-Star Game selection. The 25-year-old first baseman has batted .299 with 12 homers and a .887 OPS. He hit .375 with five homers and a 1.196 OPS in 12 games this month before his wrist became a problem.
Freeman had played a Major League-high 243 consecutive games before he exited Wednesday night's game against the Red Sox in the sixth inning and then missed the final four games of the homestand.
"It's just not getting better," Freeman said after he was unable to swing a bat before Sunday's series finale against the Mets.
Freeman played through the discomfort for three games and then received a cortisone shot immediately after exiting Wednesday's game. He was initially projected to return to the lineup this past weekend. But when the discomfort lingered, the Braves scheduled the MRI exam.
The Braves swept the Mets without Freeman's presence. But they will now play six of their next nine games against the first-place Nationals without their only legitimate power threat.
While Kelly Johnson assumed Freeman's role throughout the Mets series, Gonzalez opted to use Chris Johnson as his starting first baseman for Tuesday's series opener against the Nationals at Nationals Park. Terdoslavich stands as another option to fill the position.
"This will give those guys an opportunity to play over there, but we'll figure it out," Gonzalez said. "We didn't have [Freeman] the whole weekend series against the Mets and we won three. We'll be creative."