Anthony Rizzo and Freddie Freeman couldn’t stop smiling as they interacted in a laugher Wednesday night. Why? Because Rizzo was pitching to Freeman at the time and eventually struck him out with a slow curve.
The All-Star first basemen had their odd showdown as Freeman’s Braves were leading Rizzo’s Cubs 10-0 in the seventh inning in Atlanta. Cubs manager David Ross decided to save some bullpen arms and have multiple position players pitch. Rizzo was the first to go to the mound.
Rizzo and Freeman gained national attention 10 days earlier after Rizzo, was mic’d-up for ESPN’s “Sunday Night Baseball,” yelled “Frederick” as he chased Freeman back to second base on a rundown play. Both had a good laugh over that. As a smiling Rizzo stared down a smiling Frederick from 60 feet, 6 inches away, more hilarity ensued.
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Freeman was in very good humor after the game.
“That’s what baseball is, that’s what sports is, it’s to put smiles on people’s faces,” Freeman said, per reporter/podcaster Grant McAuley.
Freeman could afford to be cheery, seeing as he had already collected four hits, including a home run, in the game and his team was up big at the time. If he was still in a good mood later on, he could have written a funny message on the ball after Rizzo had it sent over for Freeman to sign.
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