Giancarlo Stanton looks as good as new

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Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton suffered multiple facial fractures and dental damage when he was hit by a pitch from Brewers right-hander Mike Fiers on September 11, but he’s looking like his old self again just a little over two weeks later. Check out this picture he posted to his Instagram account yesterday:

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Great to see. Stanton recently told reporters that it’s expected to take around 4-6 weeks for his facial fractures to heal. He’s also getting some work done on his teeth. Still, it’s pretty remarkable when you consider how scary things looked in the immediate aftermath.

Stanton was having an MLB-caliber season prior to the injury, with a .288/.395/.555 batting line to go along with 37 home runs and 105 RBI. Even though he has missed the last 15 games, he still has six more homers than anybody else in the National League. The Cubs’ Anthony Rizzo ranks second with 31 home runs.

Fried, Braves go to salary arbitration for 2nd straight year

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Brett Davis/USA TODAY Sports
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Pitcher Max Fried went to salary arbitration with the Atlanta Braves for the second straight year, asking for $15 million instead of the team’s $13.5 million offer.

The 29-year-old left-hander went 14-7 for the second straight season and lowered his ERA to 2.48 from 3.04 in 2021. Fried was a first-time All-Star last season, was second to Miami’s Sandy Alcantara in Cy Young Award voting and was third in the National League in ERA behind Alcantara and Julio Urias with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Fried won a $6.85 million salary last year instead of the team’s $6.6 million proposal in arbitration. That was after he pitched six shutout innings in World Series Game 6 as the Braves won their first title since 1995.

Fried, who is eligible for free agency after the 2024 World Series, had his case heard Friday by a panel that’s expected to issue a decision Saturday.

Players have won two of three decisions so far: Pitcher Jesus Luzardo ($2.45 million) and AL batting champion Luis Arraez ($6.1 million) both beat the Miami Marlins. But Seattle defeated Diego Castillo ($2.95 million).

A decision is being held for Los Angeles Angels outfielder Hunter Renfroe, whose case was argued Monday. About 20 more cases are scheduled through Feb. 17.