In this article we will talk about how the former baseball player, David Freese, battled depression. Throughout his life, he found happiness in baseball thinking that’s where his true happiness lied, but only life could tell. Loving support from his wife and strength from his counselor, helped him shine through the darkness of his depression. We explore, in depth, about his glory and strength of overcoming the struggle and hope to be inspired from his journey.
David Freese Depression
David Freese is popularly known for his baseball career but he is also a human after all, who had his fair share of ups and downs. Back in 2017, David Reese revealed in USA Today’s Bob Nightingale how he battled with Depression, Anxiety and Alcohol abuse.
He says, ““I was depressed. I was always depressed. “I never tried to do anything to myself, but I didn’t care about my life. …”
Freese says he has battled depression his entire life. He was going through a myriad of struggles which were difficult to combat most of his life.
About David Freese
David Richard Freese is an American former professional baseball corner infielder in Major League Baseball. He began his MLB career with the St. Louis Cardinals, where he was a key player during the 2011 postseason, batting .545 with 12 hits in the 2011 National League Championship Series. He was born on April 28, 1983- Texas. He is so much more than just his professional profile. He is a survivor, lover and a great human being. He is someone who bravely faced his fears. He battled through his depression and found light at the end of the tunnel.
Freese has suffered from depression for his entire life. It was a factor in his giving up baseball after high school and in his development of alcoholism. In November 2002, Freese was arrested for driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol near Wildwood, and received probation under a plea bargain. He was charged with public intoxication and obstructing a police officer in Lake Elsinore, California, in 2007. In December 2009, Freese was arrested for DUI in Maryland Heights, Missouri, a suburb of St. Louis. Breath tests indicated a 0.232% blood alcohol content; the state’s legal limit is 0.08%. The 2009 arrest was a violation of Freese’s probation, due to a September 2007 arrest for resisting arrest (among other charges) in Lake Elsinore, California. Freese broke his Range Rover SUV into a tree in Wildwood, Missouri, a suburb of St. Louis, on November 22, 2012. Local investigators stated that the derailment was a result of Freese’s swerving to avoid hitting a wild deer. Alcohol was not a factor in the derailment.
Freese resides in Austin, Texas, and has begun learning to play guitar. He married Mairin (née O’Leary) in September 2016. Together, they have one child, a son named Kai. Freese credits the relationship with Mairin and seeing a social worker with helping him get through his depression and alcoholism.
David Freese’s Depression journey
Back in the fall of 2011, David Reese was on the top of the world or atleast, that’s what it looked like from the outside for people who tried looking on the inside. At that time, he was a crucial player in the St. Louis Cardinals run to a World Series championship. He even earned MVP honours for his heroic performance in the Fall Classic.
What comes as a surprising news is that he was at the lowest point in his life at that time. He revealed that he was battling depression in an article where he mentioned that he was depressed. He never tried to do anything to himself, but he did not care about his life. He did not care what would happen to him. It was almost to a point that if that was his time, so be it? He also mentioned that there was definitely a lack of care about his own well-being at certain times.
As fans, we always watched him as being on his highs. It is overwhelming to learn of his depths of depression. Freese mentioned once that the arrest in 2012 was so troublesome that he would barely wish to get out of bed. He would feel lethargic and fatigued. Freese said, “ I’ve had moments like that since high school, to be honest. It has been 15-plus years of, ‘ I can’t believe I’m still here.”
These words only touch the surface of his endless sufferings. Iit must be terrible to see oneself at high on the media while they are almost dying from the inside. What’s even worse is that he wished to be anybody else.
He is the baseball hero for so many people but he said, “ You win the World Series in your hometown, and you become this guy in a city that loves Cardinal Baseball and sometimes it’s the last guy you want to be.” he added, “ The whole time, I was scared to death what was going to happen to me after baseball.”
The struggles of Freece’s depression seemed to have taken a turn when he met an intern at his friend’s downtown media production, Mairin O’Leary, who is now David Freece’s wife. They had a small wedding and celebrated with something as simple as crepes for breakfast. He said, “ I always wanted to change but it was so hard, right up until I met Mairin. I don’t know if we met at the right time or not, but it was a blessing. She is just tough. I need that. And I want that.”
He added, “she challenges the hell out of me and I love it.” They bonded over the fact that she was not a baseball fan. She had only attended three Cardinals games in her life. They met Fleet Rand, a licensed Clinical social worker in Chesterfield, Mo., whose specialty is working with those with depression and anxiety issues, as well as drugs and alcohol struggles.
Talking about his counselor, he says, “ I’ve walked through some doors in my life but with him, we clicked from Day 1. He was a guy who’s been through a lot of rough times as well, and have done things that I have done. He was not like the other counselors. It was not a guy telling me who i need to be or what i needed to do, but a guy getting to know me.”
Being in therapy made him realise that initially, he used to let baseball define him. Being the World Series MVP, is just a part of his story but not who he is.
Being with someone he loves and looks up to, things have changed for him, or better. He found perspective in life. He does not mean to say that baseball becomes less important but it just does not flood his brain as much.
Sharing further he mentioned that having alcohol issues is a lot deeper than just that. It is also about depression and anxiety. He tackled this by attacking the way he was thinking. He re-trained his brain around Mairin and sought help. The foggy feeling that he used to feel is lifted for him.
Progress Freese’s made
He brought more energy to his life , career and everything. He started to pick up hobbies that were challenging, personally. Something which he would have never dared to take up. His wife and him travelled to New Zealand one year and Thailand,another. He started collecting records and he also learned to play piano.
Mairin says, “ He’s definitely more clear-minded about his own emotions. He processes those and gets ready for those tasks ahead. He just has a deeper knowledge about himself, with the understanding of what motivates him.
Freese had spent two years with the Angels, hitting .258 and averaging 12 homers and 55 RBI a season, when he became a free agent after the 2015 season. He sat around for six months until mid-March waiting for a job. Yet, instead of panicking, he was thrilled. He made so much progress with sheer determination and support from his loved ones.
The struggle made him realise how much he loved the game. The Pirates signed him to a one-year contract and after Freese impressed everyone in the organisation with his performance as well as leadership skills, converted it into a two-year, $11 million extension. Manager Clint Hurdle and GM Neal Huntington now call Freese one of their team leaders,who uses his own experience to counsel young players.
When one sees Freese now, he has got a totally different perspective. It is seen in his mindset, it looks like he has a clear focus when he plays.
When Freese talks about life, he believes that the best is yet to come. He said, “ I was getting older, watching other people, and it was like, “Man, all of these people have their lives together. People were passing me by.’
“That’s all changed. I’m confident that when I retire I’m going to be a loving, great husband. Hopefully a kick-ass father. And a guy who doesn’t drink.
“‘Things are just so different now.’’
He also mentioned proudly that things are very different now. So different that he can’t wait to get out of bed in the morning. “You wake up and you are ready to face the world,” added Freese.
The entire journey of David Freese is truly inspiring in the sense that one can be touching skyscrapers and yet, feel small. He also gives us the hope that one can feel low and still hope to rise again. It is just a matter of support from the loved ones, belief in one’s own self, and the determination to stand back up, that life gives sweet rewards.
Hope this article inspires you through your journey of depression or, just life in general.
FAQ’s: David Freese Depression
What is David Freece’s net worth?
As of 2019, David Freece’s net worth was $40 Million approximately.
When did David Freese retire?
David Freese retired in 2019. He played for the Angels for two seasons before signing with the Pirates in March 2016. The Pirates traded Freese to the Dodgers in 2018, and he retired after the 2019 season.
What college did David Freese go to?
David Freese went to the University of Missouri, St.Louis College, Meramac, St.Louis Community College, Lafayett High School and University of South Alabama.
What we recommend for depression
If you are suffering from depression then ongoing professional counselling may be your ideal first point of call. Counselling will utilize theories such as Cognitive behavioural therapy which will help you live a more fulfilling life.