The Atlanta Braves made a wise decision opting to build around Freddie Freeman.
The Atlanta Braves made a wise decision opting to build around Freddie Freeman instead of trading the first baseman in their rebuild. Freeman rewarded the Braves last season with his best numbers to date piling up home-runs and racking up RBI’s in the latter part of the season.
Freeman’s biggest surge was in his average and power numbers. Only the best hitters see both numbers rise at once with power more than not being sacrificed for average. Freeman improved his game in both areas however hitting more than thirty balls out of the park and maintaining an average around the .300 mark for much of the season.
While it may be odd to expect improvement after a career year for Freeman he is still young and just beginning to enter what should be his prime seasons as a hitter. Add in the fact that the lineup has gotten much better with Swanson and Inciarte hitting ahead of Freeman and protection in the form of Matt Kemp an argument could be made this is the best lineup Freeman has had as a Brave.
After his early seasons of playing with a solid offense (that included Chipper Jones) Freeman has seen the Braves bat a series of under impressive hitters behind him in the order. Because of the lack of depth Freeman has often been frustrated and taken swings at pitches out of the zone. Now he will be able to relax as he did at the end of last year and earlier in his career and know that there is a legitimate bat protecting him.
This will result in less walks and a higher average for the Braves first baseman. Freeman is set for another great season that might again be the new best in his career. The Braves may still be in the middle of a rebuild but Freddie Freeman and the young talent the Braves will add in this season are more than enough reason to continue to watch and support the Atlanta Braves.