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Kris Bryant exits game with sprained ankle

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Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant suffered an apparent right ankle injury attempting to beat out a ground ball double play in the bottom of the third inning Sunday against the Cardinals. First base was wet from rain, so Bryant’s foot slid across the base, causing the injury. [Update: Per The Athletic’s Patrick Mooney, Bryant has a sprained right ankle. X-rays were negative.]

Bryant was 0-for-1 before exiting. Ian Happ took his place at third base. With the regular season nearly complete, Bryant is hitting .282/.382/.521 with 31 home runs, 77 RBI, and 108 runs scored in 634 plate appearances.

The floundering Cubs entered Sunday afternoon’s action on a five-game losing streak, leaving them three games behind the Brewers for the second NL Wild Card.

Freddie Freeman has elbow surgery

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Freddie Freeman‘s elbow began barking in the second half of the season and he was a shadow of himself in the month of September. The Braves rested him for half a minute in the season’s final week but he still played 158 games in 2019. They said he was good to go for the NLDS but he was clearly limited, going 4-for-22 in the Braves’ series loss to the Cardinals.

Today the Braves announced that Freeman underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right elbow on Wednesday. The team said today that the procedure involved the removal of three fragmented loose bodies and the cleaning up of multiple bone spur formations.

It’s not clear if more rest down the stretch would’ve made a difference for him — and it’s not clear that the Braves had options at first base for the postseason that were substantially better than even a limited Freeman — but it’s clear that not having Freeman feeling like himself in the heart of the order was a problem.

Freeman is expected to be good-to-go for spring training.