Veteran bat and postseason hero David Freese recently announced his retirement from baseball. The Dodgers acquired the former World Series MVP in August of 2018 in a trade with the Pirates and he immediately made an impact. Freese slashed .385/.489/.641 (15 for 39) in 47 plate appearances for the Dodgers before going on to hit .417 (5 for 12) (including a lead-off home run in game 5) in the Fall Classic that season.
Freese continued his hot hitting early in the 2019 season. The Dodgers utilized him a lot early at first base against left handed pitchers. Freese batted .308 in the first half of the season and was 12 for 30 (.400) when coming off the bench as a pinch-hitter. He posted a .988 OPS with runners in scoring position and hit .346 at Dodger Stadium. Overall Freese slashed .315/.403/.599 with 11 home runs across 186 plate appearances. Unfortunately Freese was only able to play in 79 games as hamstring and leg injuries cut his season short.
The Dodgers acquired him for his penchant for getting big hits in the postseason and that continued in the NLDS against Washington. Freese notched a huge hit to extend a rally in game 3. He was 4 for 8 in the five game playoff series. He’s got a career .299/.370/.549 slash line in the postseason with 10 home runs and 36 runs driven in. Freese has collected 29 extra-base hits in the postseason and has a .919 OPS.
Very few hitters who come over in July or August trades have been as successful as Freese. Only a few come to mind such as Manny Ramirez, Steve Finley or Marlon Anderson. Freese was one of the best. The 36-year old will go into retirement as one of the most clutch hitters in postseason history. The Dodgers will surely miss his clutch bat.