Doctors are now saying that what happened to Freel on the field may have severely changed his life off the field. Freel is the first MLB player to be diagnosed with Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, or CTE. It is a diagnosis that came in after his suicide and doctors say is related to repeated injuries to his brain.
"He was always the kind of guy who was 150 percent, running into walls, doing whatever it was going to take, and I think he made up for some of his athletic ability by over aggression and hustle," says Doctor Tim Kremchek, the Cincinnati Reds Medical Director.
Freel's CTE diagnosis came after he committed suicide. It's the kind of major health concern doctors and researchers say is only found during an autopsy. There is still a lot unknown about CTE.
"The other things are where the big question is. Right now, it's if you have a personality change, multiple concussions in life, and you have Tao protein, it's called CTE," explains Dr. Joseph Clark, a researcher for UC Health. Clark says even that doesn't always end in a correct diagnosis.
Meanwhile, Major League Baseball is the latest sport to take steps in the right direction.
"Coaches for years have been saying use peripheral vision," explains Clark. "We train peripheral vision. And when you get that better, you are more field aware and there is a decreased risk of a concussion."
Team doctor Tim Kremchek says he really didn't notice any personality changes from Freel. He also says he welcomes the MLB's ban on home-plate collisions.
Saturday, July 26 2014 2:09 PM EDT2014-07-26 18:09:07 GMT
A mysterious 'Woman in Black' has been spotted around the Tri-State in recent days, causing social media to erupt with questions about her identity. According to WATE in Tennessee, the Sullivan CountyFull Story >
A mysterious 'Woman in Black' has been spotted around the Tri-State in recent days, causing social media to erupt with questions about her identity.Full Story >
Monday, July 28 2014 6:12 PM EDT2014-07-28 22:12:32 GMT
Damage was reported in several areas of Highland County Sunday night after a strong storm went through the area. According to the National Weather Service, numerous trees and power lines were blown downFull Story >
Damage was reported in several areas of Highland County Sunday night after a strong storm went through the area.Full Story >