Freddie Freeman’s emotional reunion with his former fans in Atlanta appears to have rubbed at least one Los Angeles Dodger the wrong way.
Freeman left the Braves after 12 seasons to join the Dodgers, and the weekend series marked his first games in Atlanta since departing. Freeman was clearly emotional and did not hide how mixed his feelings were to be playing against the Braves in Atlanta.
Dodgers pitcher Clayton Kershaw had a front row seat to all of this. The former All-Star had what seemed to be a reminder for Freeman after the whirlwind weekend by noting that he did not want the Dodgers to be “second fiddle.”
“It was very cool (to see Freeman’s reception Friday night),” Kershaw told Gabriel Burns of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “He’s obviously been a big contributor for our team. And I hope we’re not second fiddle. It’s a pretty special team over here, too. I think whenever he gets comfortable over here, he’ll really enjoy it. It was a good night for him (Friday).”
Kershaw has been around long enough that he knows to choose his words carefully in public. This seems to be a gentle nudge toward Freeman reminding him that it’s time to move on from Atlanta once and for all.
Freeman has been around a while too and will know his new teammates will not want to be spurned. The good news for the Dodgers is that the new reality seemed to set in for both sides on Saturday.