As the A's march forward, looking to extend their winning streak to 10 games, I'd like to introduce you to first baseman Nate Freiman. As a Rule 5 player, he has to stay on the 25-man roster for the entire season, so it's apparent that the team had to like him.
You will too. He's the kind of guy you'd want your daughter to meet. He majored in history (minored in math) at Duke, and in high school, he was in both the Spanish and English National Honor Societies.
Our first introduction to Freiman were these tweets from San Francisco Chronicle beat writer Susan Slusser:
Freiman told manager Bo Porter OK, he'd stick around, watch end of game. Porter said, "No, you don't understand, you have to leave."
Now, Yahoo writer Tim Brown has penned quite the feature on Freiman, Here's just a snippet:
Near as anyone can tell, there's never been a taller major-league position player than Freiman, which, alone, makes him unique. He's 26, had not played above Double-A until last week, doesn't strike out nearly as much as his size might suggest he would, and has, A's manager Bob Melvin said Tuesday, "As much power as anyone here."
Yoenis Cespedes wasn't more than 10 feet away.
I introduced myself to Nate Freiman out of curiosity, because I wonder what it's like to be so enamored by the game that there are no options but to play it, even when there are options. When the body doesn't exactly fit. When his dad didn't play. When spring ball follows 20 minutes of pushing snow off the basepaths. When, given the newspaper experience, he's asked if he still write and the answer that follows is: "I haven't written anything since college. I was OK. But I wasn't Faulkner or anything."
Nor, he confirmed, has he lately written any "allegorical poetry," perhaps assuming I knew what that was.
The A's face the Detroit Tigers today at 1 p.m. in an incredible pitching matchup — Brett Anderson vs. Justin Verlander.