Braves’ Freeman returns to lineup with rested elbow

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NEW YORK (AP)Freddie Freeman has returned to the Atlanta Braves’ lineup after staying home this week to receive treatment on his sore right elbow.

Freeman was set to bat third and start at first base for the NL East champions against the Mets on Friday night.

The four-time All-Star says he could not straighten his right arm before resting this week. He did not travel with Atlanta for a two-game series at Kansas City and hasn’t played since Sunday.

He says the rehab was effective and he anticipates playing all three games this weekend in New York to conclude the regular season. Atlanta will host the first game of an NL Division Series on Thursday.

Freeman is batting .296 and has set career highs with 38 home runs and 121 RBIs. The elbow has bothered him for about two months, and he hasn’t homered since Sept. 1.

Braves manager Brian Snitker says outfielder Ender Inciarte will be shut down after his strained right hamstring did not respond well to running this week. Inciarte could return for the second round of the playoffs.

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