ATLANTA — Freddie Freeman would not know if he has time to be prepared for the Atlanta Braves’ opener.
Following a scary expertise in his battle with COVID-19, Freeman is grateful to also have a probability.
On Saturday, the four-time All-Star revealed he had a excessive temperature of 104.5 levels early in his battle with the illness and prayed for his life.
“I mentioned slightly prayer that night time,” Freeman mentioned in a video convention name. “I’ve by no means been that sizzling earlier than. My physique was actually, actually sizzling. … I mentioned ‘Please do not take me’ as a result of I wasn’t prepared.”
Freeman mentioned the fever was all the way down to 101 the next morning and broke two days later. He mentioned Saturday was his ninth consecutive day with out signs, which additionally included physique aches, chills and a short lived lack of his senses of style and scent. He mentioned two different members of his family, his spouse and aunt, are recovering after constructive checks.
“I really feel nice,” he mentioned. “I solely misplaced one pound. … I did not lose any energy.”
Freeman reported to Truist Park for a exercise on Friday solely about an hour after receiving his second adverse take a look at for the coronavirus, which earned him medical clearance to play.
Freeman’s appreciation of being again with the crew was apparent. The Braves posted video on the crew’s Twitter account of Freeman, carrying his bat and glove, saying “That is great” as he walked out of the dugout and appeared out on the area on Friday.
“I really feel like I am a child in a sweet retailer once more,” he mentioned Saturday. “You overlook typically how a lot you’re keen on this recreation. I did really miss it. I used to be so excited after I obtained to the yard.”
The Braves are thrilled Freeman is again.
“Clearly if you get your greatest participant again it is a constructive factor and an excellent factor,” supervisor Brian Snitker mentioned. “I am excited for him and us, too.”
Freeman set profession highs with 38 house runs and 121 RBIs final season to assist Atlanta win its second straight NL East title. He positioned fourth within the MVP voting in 2018.
Freeman’s return was properly timed. Free-agent outfielder Yasiel Puig examined constructive for the coronavirus after agreeing to signal with Atlanta. The constructive take a look at voided the deal.
Puig was projected to be a substitute for Nick Markakis, who opted out of the season after speaking on the phone with Freeman.
“Sadly that was my worst day,” Freeman mentioned, including he did not attempt to affect the choice by Markakis when the 2 spoke once more days later.
“He simply wasn’t into it and I completely, completely get it,” Freeman mentioned.
Snitker plans to provide Freeman as many at-bats as doable in intrasquad video games and exhibition video games in opposition to Miami deliberate for Tuesday and Wednesday.
Requested what he is seeking to see from Freeman, Snitker mentioned, “I do not suppose I’ve to search for something. If he is on the market he will be prepared.”
Freeman mentioned his legs had been sore on Saturday after his exercise on Friday. The Braves open the season subsequent Friday on the New York Mets.
Freeman was one in all 4 teammates to check constructive at first of summer time camp. Proper-hander Touki Toussaint, who had no signs, additionally returned Friday. Left-handed reliever Will Smith and infielder Pete Kozma haven’t returned.
Freeman wore a facemask throughout a video interview and mentioned he’ll proceed to take precautions.
“It is very severe,” he mentioned, including that his household “did all the things proper” to keep away from the illness. “It nonetheless someway obtained to me.”
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