Los Angeles Dodgers first baseman Freddie Freeman exited Canada’s World Baseball Classic game on Tuesday against Colombia with a “slight” hamstring issue, according to the broadcast. He was shown on replay running at a conservative pace after hitting a pop-up to end the top of the third inning. Freeman was replaced by Denzel Clarke to begin the bottom of the fourth.Here’s a look at Freeman’s gait following his pop-up:
Freeman, 33 years old, has been remarkably durable during his big-league career. He’s appeared in at least 158 games in each of the last four full seasons, and he played in all 60 of his opportunities during the pandemic-shortened 2020 campaign. Last season, his first with the Dodgers, saw him bat .325/.407/.511 (152 OPS+) with 21 home runs in 159 contests.Manager Ernie Whitt told reporters, including Baseball America’s Kyle Glaser, that Freeman is unlikely to appear in Canada’s lineup when they take on Mexico on Wednesday.
“He had tightness in his hammy. Of course for precautionary reasons we took him out of the game right away. He felt something on one of his swings in his second at-bat,” Whitt said, per Glaser. “I don’t foresee Freddie being in (the lineup) for tomorrow. We’re waiting from the doctors to see what they say and also the Dodgers. Again, that’s the most important thing is his health.”Freeman’s injury could prove to be a critical one for Canada, which entered Monday 1-1 in Pool C play. Canada has a date with Mexico on Wednesday afternoon, but Mexico will first play Great Britain on Tuesday night. Provided the Americans go on to beat Colombia on Wednesday night, that would retroactively turn Canada-Mexico into an elimination game.
Canada has yet to advance beyond pool play in the WBC despite appearing in every tournament to date.