Matheny gives slumping Freese a breather

Matheny gives slumping Freese a breather

ST. LOUIS -- Both David Freese and Cards manager Mike Matheny had the same idea on Monday. With Freese mired in a 6-for-42 slump over the last 12 games, it was time for him to take a day off.

"[David]'s pressing a little bit, and we just wanted to give him a day to breathe a little bit, get his mind right, get his swing right and jump back on it," Matheny said before the series opener against the Padres.

Freese went 3-for-18 during the Cardinals' five-game road trip to the West Coast, including an 0-for-4, four-strikeout outing in Sunday's 6-5 loss to the Dodgers. The third baseman has seen his average slip, from .312 to .259, since May 9.

"I think [if] you play this game long enough, you're going to go into slumps like this," Freese said. "The frustrating thing is us losing ballgames."

Freese had said previously that he didn't plan on making any changes to his routine in order to break out of the slump, but he has recognized what's been going wrong at the plate over the past few weeks and will address it. He said that he can feel himself opening up on his swing and will focus on trying to stay closed.

Matheny hasn't ruled out the possibility of giving Freese more time off in an effort to straighten out his swing.