Dodgers News: Freddie Freeman Enjoyed ‘Special’ Visit To Toronto

Freddie Freeman grew up in Southern California and played high school baseball at El Modena in the city of Orange. He was committed to play collegiately at Cal State University, Fullerton, before being taken by the Atlanta Braves in the second round of the 2007 MLB Draft.

However, there was a previously unknown aspect of Freeman’s lineage that became public knowledge later on in his MLB career amid back-to-back appearances for Team Canada during the World Baseball Classic in 2017 and 2023. Freeman’s connection with Canada stems from both his father and mother being from the country.

Freeman’s ties to Canada are primarily traced to his late mother, Rosemary Joy Freeman, who was born in Toronto. It was this Canadian connection that allowed him to be eligible to play for Team Canada.

Freeman’s mother passed away due to melanoma in 2000 and it is something that he has become more comfortable discussing and being able to carry on her legacy through the WBC. With the Dodgers playing the Blue Jays this weekend, it gave him another chance to take it all in once again, via SportsNet LA:

“It doesn’t really feel different. In 2017, I represented Team Canada as well, and we came that same year with the Braves, so it was a little weird. I came back through customs [Thursday] night and one of the customs agents said, ‘Welcome home.’ I was like, ‘I’m not technically from here,’ but it’s always fun for me to come back here just because of my mom and my dad. My dad’s here, his first time he’s been back to Toronto in like 30 years, so this week is going to be special.”

This weekend’s matchup against the Blue Jays holds some extra significance due to a pleasant coincidence that Rogers Centre is located in the city of Toronto, the birthplace of Freeman’s mother:

“So she’s right on the forefront of everything. Pretty much everything I do is for her, I wear sleeves because of her. So being back here, the first few times I came back with the Braves, there were always a few cheers every once in a while, and there’d be a yellow envelope and it’d be pictures of my mom from like a third cousin. So it’s always been special to come back here. I’ve always seemed to do okay here as well. So hopefully that continues this weekend. But yeah, coming back to Toronto, especially the place where she was born and grew up, it’s always special.”

Freeman and Team Canada did not advance past the group stage in either years, with 2017 being a rough tournament for the country.

However, they did see some improvement in the 2023 iteration and even earned an automatic bid for the next World Baseball Classic with a third-place finish in a strong group that included the United States, Mexico, Columbia and an upstart Great Britain team.

How Freddie Freeman got out of slump

A mini slump from Freeman was one of the reasons for the Dodgers’ offensive struggles the past couple weeks. However, there was always the expectation of the 15-year veteran identifying and making the necessary adjustments to pull himself out of it.

That did come to be, even if Freeman has not yet found the usual consistency he strives for.

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