Former Smokie, Ex-MLB player Ryan Freel found dead in Fla. home
MIAMI (AP/WATE) - Former Tennessee Smokie and Ex-Major League Baseball player Ryan Freel has been found dead in his Florida home, and authorities are investigating his death as a possible suicide from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Jacksonville Sheriff's Office spokesman Shannon Hartley said Sunday that the 36-year-old Freel's body was found at his Jacksonville home Saturday afternoon. The medical examiner will make the final determination of the cause of death.
The career of the speedy Freel was cut short after eight seasons by head injuries. He spent six of his eight big-league seasons with the Cincinnati Reds and finished his career in 2009 with a .268 average and 143 steals.
He played for the Tennessee Smokies from 1997-2000 before being called up to the majors.
The Florida native once estimated he'd sustained up to 10 concussions. Freel missed 30 games in 2007 after a collision with a teammate caused a concussion.
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