Freeman expresses frustration about his blurred vision
Freddie Freeman is every bit as frustrated as the countless fans who have suggested that he could have received sports goggles or other effective corrective lenses had he simply gone through Amazon.com or visited a nearby LensCrafters. But the Braves first baseman is doing all he can to remain patient while waiting to find a solution for the blurry vision problems he has battled the past three weeks.
Freeman has battled dry eyes since the Braves played in Colorado at the beginning of this month. The young first baseman has been utilizing eye drops. But his eyes have become irritated whenever he has put the contacts back in his eyes. He is now waiting on the arrival of goggles with the hope that they will provide him the peripheral vision that glasses don’t provide with his somewhat closed batting stance.
“It’s going to take some time,” Freeman said. “That’s why I have taken the last couple days off. One day, I take a day off and then all of sudden I put the contacts in and go back to square one with all of the burning and everything. So I might as well take a couple (days) and take the drops like the doctors gave me and hopefully that works.
“It’s frustrating. I’ve never had this problem. I try to play through everything. When I can’t play through something, it’s even more frustrating, especially the little stretch we’re going through. You just want to be out there to help the team. But I’m just helpless.”
Carrying the frustration that has built during a seven-game losing streak, the Braves were glad to welcome Brian McCann back to the starting lineup for Monday afternoon’s game against the Cardinals. The six-time All-Star catcher was hoping to be able to play the entire game. He is still trying to regain the energy he lost while battling fevers and a virus since last Tuesday.
But Freeman was out of the lineup for a third straight day and for the fourth time in the club’s past five games. He believes the corrective goggles he ordered from both Under Armour and Oakley will arrive by Tuesday. An order was placed with both companies to increase the odds of him returning to the lineup as soon as possible.
Both companies said it could take a week to make the glasses and ship them to Freeman.
“They said six or seven days because you’ve got to cut the prescription and everything like that,” Freeman said. ” They’ve got to get the eye pupil distance. People think you just go and get goggles. It’s not like that. They’re going as quick as they can because they know it’s an emergency.”
Freeman had never experienced any problems with his contacts until the Braves were playing at Coors Field earlier this month. Despite going 6-for-14 with a double, triple and two home runs in that series against the Rockies, he could tell something was wrong.
Freeman earned his second National League Player of the Week award of the year the day after the Braves left Colorado. In the 16 games that have followed, he has batted .150 with three doubles and a home run.
Through recent examinations to determine why his tear ducts are not creating moisture in his eyes, Freeman has learned his vision has changed. The power of the contact lenses he wore earlier this year were 1.5 in both eyes. His vision is now 1.75 in his left eye and 2.00 in his right eye.