Freddie Freeman is making quick progress after partially disclocating his right kneecap Tuesday while doing pick drills at first base.
Freeman hit off a tee and took live batting practice earlier today, after which he told David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that he didn’t even think about his knee. “I let it loose and I feel great,” Freeman told O’Brien.
It’s not clear when Freeman will make his Grapefruit League debut, but Mark Bowman of MLB.com reports that he hopes to be cleared to take infield within the next two days.
Freeman, 22, batted .282/.346/.448 with 21 home runs, 76 RBI and a .795 OPS last season. He finished second in the National League Rookie of the Year balloting behind teammate Craig Kimbrel.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts announced on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu will open the regular season in the starting rotation, MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick reports.
Ryu, 30, missed the entire 2015 season and made only one start last season due to shoulder and elbow injuries. The lefty has looked solid in three spring appearances, however, yielding a lone run on five hits and a walk with eight strikeouts in nine innings.
With Scott Kazmir likely to begin the season on the disabled list, that leaves Alex Wood and Brandon McCarthy to battle it out for the fifth spot in the Dodgers’ rotation.
Royals outfielder Jorge Soler has been diagnosed with a strained oblique, making it likely that he begins the regular season on the disabled list, Rustin Dodd of The Kansas City Star reports.
The Royals acquired Soler from the Cubs in December in exchange for reliever Wade Davis. Over parts of three seasons with the Cubs, Soler hit .258/.328/.434 with 27 home runs and 98 RBI in 765 plate appearances.
When he’s healthy, Soler is expected to find himself in the Royals’ lineup as a right fielder and occasionally as a designated hitter.