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Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman smashed his 13th home run of the season Monday evening, trailing just Hank Aaron (16) and Eddie Mathews (14) for the most dingers through the franchise’s first 35 games of a season, per Sportsnet Stats.
Freeman’s early-season success has spread out evenly. After notching nine home runs over 23 games in April, the 27-year-old has followed that with another four in 12 games so far in May. He and the Braves have faced 10 different teams so far this season, and Freeman has hit a home run against each of them, per ESPN Stats & Info.
While Freeman has generally displayed consistency at the plate, he’s taken his production to a new level over the past couple of seasons. The 6’5″ lefty had never hit more than 23 home runs prior to last season but collected 34 over 158 contests last season. While it’s unlikely he will keep up his current pace, he’s on track to easily surpass 40 for the season and could challenge 50 bombs.
Some of his success can be attributed to the team’s unveiling of a new ballpark in 2017. Turner Field was considered a more pitcher-friendly ballpark in general, but the new stadium provides a little relief for left-handed bats like Freeman. He hit only 15 total home runs at home last season but has already recorded five in 13 home games this year.
Both Aaron and Mathews hold spots in the Hall of Fame, and Freeman has gotten off to a solid start to his career that could eventually lead to his own induction. However, he will likely require more individual and/or team awards along the way to garner more consideration for Cooperstown.