David Freese
David Freese
35-Year-Old Third Baseman3B
Los Angeles Dodgers
2019 Fantasy Outlook
There were questions aplenty surrounding Freese heading into 2018. Would Jung Ho Kang return to third-base duties during the season? Would Colin Moran force Freese into a strict platoon role? As it turned out, Freese got more playing time than expected, but it still wasn't much by his standards. He logged his fewest plate appearances since 2010, though he actually found a good amount of success in his limited role. The 35-year-old slashed .282/.336/.444 with nine homers and 42 RBI with Pittsburgh before being dealt to the Dodgers in late August. He then went 15-for-39 with two homers and nine RBI in a platoon role for Los Angeles. The Dodgers exercised their option on Freese in the offseason, so he will return to short-side platoon duty in 2019. He still crushes lefties, but the limited playing time takes him out of the mixed-league discussion to start the season. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a one-year, $4.5 million contract with the Dodgers in November of 2018.
Inks one-year deal with Dodgers
3BLos Angeles Dodgers
November 1, 2018
Freese agreed to a one-year contract with Los Angeles on Thursday, Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports.
The Dodgers elected to keep Freese on the roster for the 2019 season: they bought him out for $500,000 and then agreed to a one year, $4.5 million deal. The 35-year-old third baseman went 8-for-22 with a double, a triple, two home runs and six RBI over 14 postseason games in 2018.
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Batting Stats
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Left/Right Batting Splits
Since 2016
Since 2016vs Left .888 389 49 12 51 0 .321 .406 .482
Since 2016vs Right .722 918 96 22 107 0 .254 .340 .382
2018vs Left .876 155 17 5 21 0 .321 .387 .489
2018vs Right .786 157 21 6 30 0 .273 .331 .455
2017vs Left .839 129 16 3 15 0 .308 .419 .421
2017vs Right .704 374 28 7 37 0 .248 .350 .354
2016vs Left .963 105 16 4 15 0 .337 .419 .543
2016vs Right .710 387 47 9 40 0 .252 .333 .377
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Home/Away Batting Splits
Since 2016
OPS at Home
OPS on Road
OPS at Home
Even Split
Since 2016Home .786 652 70 16 83 0 .280 .370 .416
Since 2016Away .756 655 75 18 75 0 .268 .350 .407
2018Home .824 157 17 4 26 0 .284 .376 .448
2018Away .835 155 21 7 25 0 .308 .342 .493
2017Home .785 248 24 7 31 0 .271 .375 .410
2017Away .694 255 20 3 21 0 .255 .361 .333
2016Home .763 247 29 5 26 0 .285 .360 .403
2016Away .764 245 34 8 29 0 .255 .343 .421
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Stat Review
How does David Freese compare to other hitters?
This section compares his stats with all batting seasons from the previous three seasons (minimum 400 plate appearances). The bar represents the player's percentile rank. For example, if the bar is halfway across, then the player falls into the 50th percentile for that stat and it would be considered average.
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring David Freese
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
With Jung Ho Kang in South Korea all season after being denied a work visa, Freese was the Pirates' regular third baseman, save for an April visit to the disabled list with a sore hamstring. Apparently, he never received the memo about launch angle as Freese continued to carry one of the lowest flyball rates in the league. That's fine when you're Willie Mays Hayes, but Freese consistently sports a HR/FB above league average, even while playing in power-depressing venues his whole career. The past season followed the same pattern as the journeyman third baseman recorded a 14.1 percent HR/FB while hitting a flyball only 22.6 percent of the time, resulting in just 10 homers. Kang's 2018 situation still unclear, but the newly-acquired Colin Moran could cut into Freese's playing time. Even if Freese remains the primary starter, expect pedestrian homers with a useful average, a package best suited for NL-only formats.
The 33-year-old Freese parlayed a one-year spring training deal into a two-year, $11 million extension based on a .276/.355/.437 line with 12 homers and 49 RBI through Aug. 22. He played well at third base with Jung-Ho Kang (knee) sidelined for the first five weeks and then split time at first base and third the rest of the way. Since 2012, Freese has hit between 10 and 14 homers while driving in 49 to 55 RBI each year. After signing his extension last summer, his numbers slipped: he hit .247 with one homer and six RBI in 101 plate appearances despite a .404 BABIP. There's a better chance his numbers decline than improve in 2017 given his advancing age and competition for playing time.
Freese had a bit of a rebound from his disastrous 2014 season, as he posted the second-highest ISO of his career (.163), but the strikeout rate approached 23 percent, while the walk rate (6.6%) was his lowest since 2009 as a member of the Cardinals. Freese missed all of August with a finger injury, and though he was able to post a .933 OPS upon his return in September, he was not given a qualifying offer from the team, and elected to become a free agent in November. Third base has become a premium slugging position with the emergence of players like Kris Bryant and Nolan Arenado, making the 32-year-old a late-round option at best in most formats if he can find a place where he is the starter, and he would have even less value in the possible scenario where he is acquired by a club to be a bench bat.
Freese's first season as a member of the Angels ended in disappointment, as the 31-year-old posted the lowest .OPS of his career (.704) in 134 games. While his batted-ball profile showed a career-best mark for line drive percentage, as well as a decrease in groundballs, his strikeout rate continued to climb, settling at a career-high 24.3%. He also walked just 38 times in 462 at-bats, carrying his lowest walk rate (7.4%) since 2011. Despite his unflattering overall numbers, Freese managed to salvage September, as he sported a .315/.367/.562 line with just nine punchouts in 73 at-bats. Freese will almost certainly begin the 2015 season at the hot corner, but Gordon Beckham saw a few starts at third base before he turned it on in the final month, so it's not inconceivable that he could find himself playing for his job at some point if he can't get his strikeout numbers under control.
Freese struggled in his final season with the Cardinals, seeing his numbers come down across the board, likely the result of a normalization of his BABIP (.320) thanks to a very groundball-heavy profile (55.2% groundball rate). Over his five-year big league career, Freese has been increasingly prone to pounding pitches into the ground, which understandably has taken a toll on the power he can provide. After being traded to the Angels during the offseason, he'll have minimal competition for playing time in Orange County, but his new home park doesn't offer much in terms of an upgraded run environment. Fortunately, he may be able to pile up useful counting stats if the Angels manage to get rebound efforts from Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton in front of Freese in the batting order.
Freese finally put it all together and made it through a whole season, and while his numbers won't remind anyone of his legendary 2011 postseason run, they weren't bad. Unfortunately, Freese turns 30 in April, and while he doesn't have a lot of miles on his tires, his prime could be short-lived. As long as he stays healthy - and that's a big if - he could hit a lot of home runs in the next few years, but if his contact rate declines even just a little bit (he had 122 strikeouts in 501 at-bats last year), Freese might find himself on the bench more often than he has in recent seasons even when healthy.
Freese may have finally left his bad luck behind in 2011. Oh, he had a two-month stint on the DL with a broken hand, but that was all forgotten once October rolled around, as he hit like a man possessed (.397/.465/.794 and five home runs in 63 at-bats). His postseason heroics will likely overrate him some, but one shouldn't consider him flash in the pan, as he's always been a pretty good hitter and just needed the opportunity. Though his career-high 10 home runs in just 333 at-bats is a good sign, his exorbitantly-high .359 BABIP might suggest his batting average is coming down a little in 2012. Then again, his BABIP has always been high.
Freese can't seem to catch a break. Every time it looks like he's going to be handed the job at the hot corner, injuries or other circumstances ruin the opportunity. Last season, he even suffered a fluke toe injury when he was already on the DL with an ankle injury. When he was healthy, he didn't provide the home runs you would expect from a corner infielder, though his .361 on base percentage shows promise. Once again, he's at the top of the organizational depth chart at third, but the Cardinals could be looking elsewhere in the offseason.
Poor guy. In March it looked like Freese would be the main beneficiary of Troy Glaus' shoulder surgery. Fantasy owners paid accordingly. After a couple of weeks of backing up the likes of Brian Barden and Joe Thurston, Freese was sent down. Although he continued to show his strong power, he had an ankle injury that kept him out of action for a couple of months. By the time the Cards called him up in September, his time had passed. The good news is that Brett Wallace is now gone, so Freese may have a clear path to the third-base job in 2009. That is, if he can hold off Allen Craig, Barden and Thurston.
Freese came over from the Padres a year ago, blocked by Kevin Kouzmanoff. His path to the majors isn't any better in St. Louis, with Troy Glaus ahead of him and Brett Wallace and Allen Craig coming up behind him fast. As a 25-year-old playing in Triple-A for the first time in 2008, Freese hit .306/.361/.550, so he's proved himself to be good with the stick. He probably will not be able to hold off Wallace for much longer, so if he doesn't make the majors in 2009, he'll probably be elsewhere by 2010.
Freese turned in a solid season at High-A Lake Elsinore last year (.302/.400/.489 with 17 homers and 96 RBI), but that was as a 24-year-old in a low-level league that favors hitters. Freese's path in San Diego was blocked at third base by Kevin Kouzmanoff and top prospect Chase Headley, so an offseason trade to St. Louis should improve his fantasy outlook. He'll likely spend 2008 in Double-A with an outside shot of reaching the majors in September.
More Fantasy News
Deadline for option pushed back
3BLos Angeles Dodgers
November 1, 2018
Freese and the Dodgers agreed to extend the deadline on his option until Friday, Jon Heyman of Fancred reports.
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Leading off in Game 6
3BLos Angeles Dodgers
October 19, 2018
Freese will bat atop the Dodgers' order and start at first base for Game 6 of the NLCS against Milwaukee on Friday.
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Will start at first base Friday
3BLos Angeles Dodgers
October 11, 2018
Manager Dave Roberts stated that Freese will start Game 1 of the NLCS against Milwaukee on Friday at first base, J.P. Hoornstra of the Los Angeles Daily News reports.
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Picks up two hits
3BLos Angeles Dodgers
September 30, 2018
Freese went 2-for-4 with a double, one RBI and two runs scored against San Francisco on Sunday.
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Connects for 11th homer
3BLos Angeles Dodgers
September 25, 2018
Freese batted third and went 3-for-4 with a home run and a pair of RBI in Monday's 7-4 win over Arizona.
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