So Farney’s friend is banged up again:
Reds center fielder Ryan Freel had a few souvenirs from Tuesday night’s nasty headfirst collision with the wall at Bright House Networks Field.
On Wednesday morning, Freel reported having a sore left rib cage, a sore right shoulder blade and a sore back.
“Other than that, I’m sore,” said Freel, who later went for X-rays on his ribs. They were negative for fractures.
In the first inning against the Phillies, Freel made a magnificent run and diving catch at the left-center-field warning track on Aaron Rowand’s long drive. The 31-year-old Freel crashed headfirst into the fence and spent several moments sprawled out on the ground while concerned teammates looked on. He finished the inning but left the game in the second.
“My shoulder hit, and then my head hit the pad,” Freel explained. “I hit it pretty hard. I didn’t slide on the gravel to slow me down. It was a catch, bang, hit.”
Anyone else worried about Freel starting in CF? Not because he can’t handle it day to day, but because he may go crazy and hurt either Adam Dunn in LF or Ken Griffey in RF with his wild play?
Jeff says to put a leash on Freel. Heh.
Let’s be honest: though Freel is a health hazard to himself and others, it’s unfair to ask him to slow down. That’s who he is and, frankly, it’s why he has value to a major league team. If Freel didn’t play as hard as he does, he’d be just another utility guy.
I’ll take Freel like he is. But I’m going to cross my fingers and hope he doesn’t create a disaster out there.