Wow, just wow. The only thing more exciting than tonight’s midnight release of “Catching Fire” is the news that Prince Fielder is headed to the Texas Rangers! Sure there was another guy involved in that trade, but Clave gave his take on Ian Kinsler while Dixon took on the trade as a whole. Here, we’re just want to focus on the the biggest thing in Texas next to Jerryland, Prince Fielder!
The Texas Rangers were a player in the original Prince Fielder sweepstakes when he was a free agent two winters ago. It took them a couple of seasons, but they finally landed their big hitting first baseman. There has been a lot of talk about the Rangers’ plans with Nelson Cruz as a free agent this Winter, and one outlandish trade rumor about Elvis Andrus for Matt Kemp, who would believe such a trade could happen?
Never-the-less, the Rangers needed to do some work to free up some room for Jurickson Profar, and that they did. Although did give up Kinsler, a great second baseman, they may not miss him as much as they will love Prince’s big bat in the cleanup spot.
No, no, I am not going to start in with the 50 home run talk for Prince, however even with these mild numbers that he put up in 2013, Prince is still a great option for the Rangers hitting fourth.
This move mostly likely will slide Alex Rios to the 3rd spot, and he is a MUCH better option than Lance Berkman who manned the 3-hole most of last year. So the heart of the order should be very solid for Texas. The top of the order will be as athletic and dynamic as ever with Jurickson Profar and Elvis Andrus. They’ll likely put Prince between Beltre and Alex Rios and I don’t know how much protection Rios will offer. Personally I walk Prince to get to Rios every time, and the same is true if they put Beltre behind him.
Prince Fielder is about as little an injury risk as a player can be. He’s played 162 games in each of the last three seasons and in four of the last five. The one exception was 2010, when he played 161.
He is also patient and can hit the pitches he likes a long long way. He has also hit over 100 RBI in 6 of his 8 major leagues seasons, so if the guys in front of him get on, he will get them in.
I probably would have put Prince Fielder as the 4-5th first baseman behind guys like Paul Goldschmidt, Joey Votto, Chris Davis, and likely Freddie Freeman. Not much really changes there right away for me.
I do however think that Prince might feel more like the man stepping into the 4 spot on a Rangers team. As good as Beltre is, he’s not what Miguel Cabrera was with the Detroit Tigers, or Ryan Braun was with the Milwaukee Brewers. He’s also going to be 35 next April and while the last few years have been good, durability has been an issue in the past.
Some might think that would hurt a guy’s value, but maybe, just maybe it will be time for Prince to emerge as the the main man. Prince really might be a steal if he is going in rounds 4-5 or for less than $30 in a draft as he very well could end up the second best fantasy 1B by season’s end, behind none other than Miguel Cabrera of course, who will likely move back across the diamond.
Sorry Prince, you just can’t escape Miggy’s shadow. But this is going to be a nice trade for him.