As many have speculated all week since the Braves acquired Matt Olson to take over at first base, Freddie Freeman will wear Dodger blue in 2022. The five-time All-Star first baseman is in agreement on a six-year, $162 million deal with Los Angeles, as ESPN’s Kiley McDaniel and Jeff Passan reported late Wednesday night:
BREAKING: Freddie Freeman has agreed to terms with the Dodgers on a six-year, $162 million deal according to @JeffPassan and me.— Kiley McDaniel (@kileymcd) March 17, 2022
Freeman, 32, was the heart and soul of the Braves for the better part of the last 12 seasons, but now he’ll shift his career to his home city and join one of the most fearsome lineups in major league history. The Dodgers have an opening at second base after Corey Seager departed in free agency and Trea Turner shifted back to his natural position of shortstop. Freeman’s arrival could shift two-time All-Star Max Muncy to second — a position he’s played 155 games at as a major leaguer — though the Dodgers could just as easily give Muncy the bulk of the starts at DH and utilize Chris Taylor and Gavin Lux as their primary options at second.
A year after winning NL MVP and posting a .341/.462/.640 slash line with 13 homers during the 60-game pandemic-shortened 2020 season, Freeman regressed to his (still extremely good) norm in 2021, hitting .300/.393/.503 with 31 homers while helping the Braves to their first World Series title since 1995.
Freeman departs Atlanta with the 12th-highest bWAR in Braves history at 43.1. He ranks ninth in franchise history in games played (1,565), third in doubles (367), sixth in homers (271), and seventh in RBI (941). That’s pretty good company to keep with a franchise that employed Hank Aaron and Chipper Jones for decades.