As of yesterday afternoon, the outlook was rather positive on Freddie Freeman’s troublesome right elbow. But he was scratched from his scheduled spring appearance today owing to inflammation in the joint.
It’s not time to panic if you’re a Braves fan. The club made clear it’s a precautionary move. And some amount of swelling in the elbow at some point was probably inevitable. Freeman, after all, required fairly extensive cleanup work over the offseason to address painful bone spurs.
The situation does certainly warrant close attention from the Atlanta training staff. Freeman is obviously a key cog in the Braves’ lineup. He gamely battled through the injury down the stretch last year, but produced a prolonged slump at the plate.
Manager Brian Snitker spoke on the subject, explaining that it’s not seen as cause for major alarm at the moment. (Video via 680 The Fan, on Twitter). The hope is that Freeman can take a few days off and then get back going. Unsurprisingly, the skipper evinced little worry that his star hitter would be capable of fully preparing for the season to come even if he’s delayed.
Stepping into the lineup today is Yonder Alonso, who’d also be the top insurance plan to help the club cope with any absence from its top-of-class first baseman. The Braves will hope instead that Alonso exits Spring Training as a bench bat and capable option to give Freeman some extra rest in the early going.