Freddie Freeman takes swings, nears rehab assignment

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Freddie Freeman’s absence with a right wrist injury has dragged on longer than the Braves originally expected, but he’s finally making some progress.

According to David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Freeman “felt great” after hitting off a tee and taking two rounds of soft-toss today. The hope right now is that he’ll be ready to begin a minor league rehab assignment within the next day or two.

Freeman has been sidelined since June 17 with what was originally referred to as a bone bruise. However, he has also dealt with tendon and ligament inflammation. He was given a platelet-rich plasma injection after being placed on the disabled list and recently received two cortisone shots in addition to having fluid removed. That doesn’t sound like much fun.

The Braves have gone 11-15 with Freeman on the disabled list and not surprisingly, his bat has been missed in a big way. The team is batting just .235/.304/.362 so far this month.

Nelson Cruz hits 400th career home run

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Twins DH Nelson Cruz hit his 400th career home run, a solo home run in the fourth inning of Sunday’s game against the Royals. The blast padded the Twins’ lead to 8-6, and was also No. 40 on the season for Cruz.

Cruz, 39, is the 57th member of the 400-homer club. He was previously tied with Andres Galarraga and Al Kaline at 399. Cruz has hit 163 of his homers with the Mariners, 157 with the Rangers, and 40 each with the Orioles and Twins.

Cruz entered Sunday batting .300/.383/.624 with 104 RBI in 500 plate appearances. Pretty good production for the Twins from a slugger on a one-year, $14.3 million contract. The Twins hold a $12 million club option for 2020 as well.