Freddie Freeman has had a couple nice years in the major leagues. Last season in the first base position rankings, he ranked tenth in the major leagues in homers (23), sixth in RBIs (94), fifteenth in average (.259), and 12th in OPS (.796).
Those are good numbers for a player in his first two years, but the Braves need a lot more. The good news is that Freeman is capable of a lot more. He’s only 23 and yet to hit his prime production years.
The sobering news if you are a Freeman fan is that first base is a position that is expected to produce big numbers. It is the easiest position on the diamond to fill. Where do you put a guy who has no speed and a bad arm or bad knees when he can still hit? First base, of course.
I like Freeman’s swing, and his nifty foot and glove work at first base. But with the Braves’ tight budget, they can’t afford to pay a first baseman big money, unless there is big production.
In 2013 the Braves need Freeman to be in the 28 homer, .285 avg., 100 RBI, .850 OPS range. With that type season, the Braves could very well lock up Freeman on a long-term contract, by this time next year.