On Tuesday afternoon at Coors Field, Kyle Freeland of the Colorado Rockies took another step toward a potential return before the curtain falls on the 2019 season.
Kyle Freeland faced live batters for the first time since going on the injured list on August 22 (retroactive to August 21) with a left groin strain. The Colorado Rockies southpaw has been working to get back to the mound before the end of the 2019 season, which will conclude on September 29 against the Milwaukee Brewers in Denver.
Tuesday’s simulated game lasted for roughly two innings and saw Freeland throw a variety of pitches. He also took fielding practice after the outing. Freeland walked off the field sweaty but also seemingly confident in his health and his impending return.
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The 26-year-old former first-round pick has endured a frustrating season on the mound, which he admits is one of the biggest reasons for his push to return. Currently with a 3-11 record and 6.98 ERA one season after finishing fourth in the National League Cy Young balloting, Freeland is hoping to have an outing that will carry some momentum over into the offseason.
"“It’s so I can take something into the offseason to make sure that I’m healthy going into the offseason,” Freeland said when asked why he was pushing to come back. “I’m not hurt going into the offseason. I don’t have to rehab anything. I can go into in the offseason and begin my workouts full-go and have a little bit of confidence and momentum coming off of one or maybe two outings in the big leagues and take that in and use that going into spring training.”"
Freeland said he “felt good” during the simulated outing. He and Colorado manager Bud Black neither one would commit to an exact timeline for Freeland’s return to the mound. However, when Freeland returns, both agreed it will be a short outing.
"“I would assume two, maybe three innings, depending on pitch count,” Freeland said when he was asked how long he thought he might be able to pitch. “That would be my guess just because I’ve been down for 26 days now. It’s just one of those health precaution things.”"
After finishing a three-game series with the New York Mets on Wednesday afternoon, the Rockies hit the road for six NL West matchups, with three coming in Los Angeles and three coming in San Francisco before returning to Denver for their final series of the season against the Brewers.