David Freese rips Pirate clubhouse culture upon reporting to camp

ST. LOUIS, MO - SEPTEMBER 10: David Freese
ST. LOUIS, MO - SEPTEMBER 10: David Freese /

On Friday, backup third baseman David Freese reported to Spring Training for the Pittsburgh Pirates and promptly ripped the clubhouse culture.

The third day of Spring Training 2018 is in the books for the Pittsburgh Pirates. At this point, most of the team’s players that have been invited to camp have reported to camp.

On Friday, now backup third baseman David Freese arrived in camp. Upon his arrival, Freese made some noise with comments of his.

Freese told reporters that a winning cultural has not existed in the Pirate clubhouse the past two seasons. “I don’t think we lost 87 games because Marte wasn’t there or Kang wasn’t there,” Freese told reporters. “We lost 87 games because our environment doesn’t allow it. I think that’s something we have to work on. I think it’s important to focus on the foundational components of what it takes to have a winning culture.”

He added, “The last two years, we haven’t done as well as we could have because of our environment. That’s what I think. I walk in every day, and it’s not in the air. The demand to win just hasn’t been in the air. That’s what you need. You can say all you want about how we’re going to win, this and that. But if you don’t walk in and you don’t feel it and you don’t see it in people’s eyes, it’s just not going to work.”

David Freese also gave his opinion on the trades of Andrew McCutchen and Gerrit Cole. From MLB.com’s Adam Berry on Twitter: “I think it was time. I think they found pieces that they wanted, that they thought they needed. … Obviously it’s frustrating for the fans and for some of these guys, especially these guys that have been around and been Pirates for a while. But it’s part of the deal, and you move on. I think this group is excited. I think it’s going to have a fresh feel, and we’re ready to go.”

He also expressed being disgruntled with players laughing and smiling in the dugout while the team is losing. Personally, I am not one who sees this as a major issue. After all, you play 162 games a season in baseball and these guys are getting paid a lot of money to play the game they love. They should be smiling and laughing. Maybe this is just the #CardinalWay coming out in the ex-Cardinal Freese who came through their robot creating minor league system.

David Freese also touched on his expectations for this year’s team. Despite the team lacking in experience, Freese does not believe that is a big deal. “If you’re good, you’re good. You’re going to play well,” he told reporters. And that is something I wholeheartedly agree with.

Next: 3 non-roster invitees to watch this spring

Is there a culture problem in the Pirate clubhouse? That is something that only people that are in the clubhouse on a daily basis can truly decide. But the team’s oldest player certainly seems to think there is.