Freeman should be OK for Dodgers' opener after early WBC exit

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Thursday, March 16, 2023

Freddie Freeman said Wednesday that he doesn't expect to miss the Los Angeles Dodgers' season opener with a hamstring injury that kept him out of Team Canada's final game of the World Baseball Classic.

Freeman was forced to exit Canada's game against Colombia in the fourth inning Tuesday after feeling tightness in the hamstring during an at-bat in the previous inning. Initial tests came back OK. Freeman is not expected to need a follow-up MRI, and he said he could be back in the batting cage Thursday.

"We expect him to be in a game sooner rather than later," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts told reporters.

Canada was eliminated from the WBC after a 10-3 loss to Team Mexico on Wednesday, meaning Freeman ended up just missing one game for the country, which he was representing because it's where his late mother was born and grew up.

Freeman, 33, has been one of baseball's most durable players throughout his 13-year career in the majors and has played in 698 out of a possible 708 regular-season games over the past five years -- including the COVID-shortened 2020 season. The six-time All-Star last spent time on the injured list during the 2017 season.

Freeman batted .325 with 21 home runs and 100 RBIs last season, his first of a six-year, $162 million contract with the Dodgers.

The Dodgers open the season against the Arizona Diamondbacks on March 30.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.