Following a scary expertise 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 while sick with the illness and prayed for his life.
“I said a little prayer that night,” Freeman mentioned in a video convention name. “I’ve never been that hot before. My body was really, really hot. … I said ‘Please don’t take me’ because I wasn’t ready.”
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 optimistic checks.
“I feel great,” he mentioned. “I only lost one pound. … I didn’t lose any strength.”
Freeman reported to Truist Park for a exercise on Friday solely about an hour after receiving his second detrimental take a look at for the coronavirus, which earned him medical clearance to play.
The Braves plan to provide Freeman as many at-bats as attainable earlier than the season. He had a run-scoring triple over the top of proper fielder Ronald Acuna Jr. in Saturday evening’s intrasquad recreation and likewise caught a foul popup over his shoulder.
Freeman’s appreciation of being again with the group was apparent. The Braves posted video on the group’s Twitter account of Freeman, carrying his bat and glove, saying “This is wonderful” as he walked out of the dugout and appeared out on the area on Friday.
“I feel like I’m a kid in a candy store again,” he mentioned Saturday. “You forget sometimes how much you love this game. I did truly miss it. I was so excited when I got to the yard.”
The Braves are thrilled Freeman is again.
“Obviously when you get your best player back it’s a positive thing and a good thing,” supervisor Brian Snitker mentioned. “I’m excited for him and us, too.”
Freeman set profession highs with 38 dwelling 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 nicely timed. Free-agent outfielder Yasiel Puig tested positive for the coronavirus after agreeing to signal with Atlanta. The optimistic take a look at voided the deal.
Puig was projected to be a substitute for Nick Markakis, who opted out of the season after talking on the telephone with Freeman.
“Unfortunately 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 just wasn’t into it, and I totally, totally get it,” Freeman mentioned.
Snitker plans to provide Freeman as many at-bats as attainable in intrasquad video games and exhibition video games towards Miami deliberate for Tuesday and Wednesday.
Asked what he is trying to see from Freeman, Snitker mentioned, “I don’t think I have to look for anything. If he’s out there he’s going to be ready.”
Freeman mentioned his legs have been sore on Saturday after his exercise on Friday. The Braves open the season subsequent Friday on the New York Mets.
Freeman was considered one of 4 teammates to check optimistic in the beginning of summer time camp. Right-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 face masks throughout a video interview and mentioned he’ll proceed to take precautions.
“It’s very serious,” he mentioned, including that his household “did everything right” to keep away from the illness. “It still somehow got to me.”
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