Freese aims to start rehab as soon as Sunday

Freese aims to start rehab as soon as Sunday

ST. LOUIS -- The Cardinals came home from a weeklong road trip to some very good news. Third baseman David Freese is making excellent progress in his return from two injuries and hopes to go on a Minor League rehabilitation assignment as soon as Sunday.

"I ran yesterday and it felt pretty good, so I'm just looking to pass today and tomorrow and get out of here. Go to Memphis and get back on the field," Freese said. "It's been frustrating this past month. I'm just looking forward to getting back out there."

The 27-year-old Freese last played on June 27. He was feeling discomfort in his right ankle for some time before that, but at the end of June he was finally placed on the disabled list. Approximately three weeks later, he endured a setback, dropping a weight on his left big toe and suffering a racture.

"I think he's really feeling good," manager Tony La Russa said. "I don't know how much the toe affected him. I just talked to him and you can tell the sincerity in what he says. He's really fired up about the way he's feeling. So that's a good sign. He's making a lot of noises about being very close. Our training staff wants to make sure he goes step by step before he goes crazy, but it's all working really well for him."

Freese is batting .296 with a .361 on-base percentage, a .404 slugging percentage, four home runs and 36 RBIs for the Cardinals this season. In his absence, Felipe Lopez has been the team's primary third baseman. The return would allow Lopez to move back to the middle infield, where both Skip Schumaker and Brendan Ryan are enduring down years at the plate.