Baltimore Orioles utility man Ryan Freel played his first game on a rehab assignment in the Bowie Baysox 8-6 loss to Akron while Brandon Snyder did not start for the second straight game Friday.
Freel was struck in the head while diving back into second base on a pickoff attempt by Red Sox starting pitcher Justin Masterson on April 20 and was placed on the disabled list the following day.
Brandon Snyder did not start due to a right leg injury sustained in Bowie’s game against the Eerie SeaWolves on Tuesday, but did come in to take Freel’s spot in the lineup in the top of the seventh Friday night. Snyder came on to play first base, moving Melvin Dorta, who started the game there, to third base when Freel exited the game.
“I fouled a fastball off my back knee and it banged it up pretty good,” Snyder said. “It’s been sore, but it’s good to go now, there’s no problem with it.”
Snyder also added that he expects to start Saturday night. He was 0-2 with a walk in and a strikeout in three plate-appearances Friday.
Freel started at third base and went 0-3 in three plate-appearances out of the leadoff spot, grounding out twice and striking out in his final at-bat before leaving after six innings. He did have an RBI when he grounded out to short in the third inning, driving in Baysox shortstop Robert Valido who led off the inning with a double.
Freel has gained attention in recent days as the Baltimore Sun and the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network have reported Freel is frustrated with his situation in Baltimore. He came over to Baltimore from the Cincinnati Reds in a trade that sent catcher Ramon Hernandez to the Reds. Freel was batting .133 in only 15 at-bats in nine games for the Orioles before his injury.
Freel was unavailable after the game, but is expected to be in Bowie for the game Saturday evening against the Akron Aeros, but it is unclear how much longer he will be with the Baysox.