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Prince Fielder for Ian Kinsler

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  • Prince Fielder for Ian Kinsler

    Well, the big guy is comin' to Texas, proving everything is bigger down here! I have been reading over a few articles on mlb.com about this trade and the possibility that Daniels is still looking at Robinson Cano for 2B. That would shift Jurickson Profar to SS, and we would need to trade Elvis Andrus (and his $126 mil salary over the next 9 years) somewhere - possibly for pitching, which is always needed down here. In one mlb.com article, that I will post here, it named some likely candidates for Andrus as: David Price, Matt Wieters, or one of my Cardinals young guns like Shelby Miller or Carlos Martinez.

    Here's a couple articles off mlb.com about the Fielder signing and the possible future of the club as we look to see how Daniels will round out the team outside of Fielder. Pun intended.

    Prince excited to join a 'great team' in Texas
    Slugger says he'll miss Detroit, but he's happy to have a new home with Rangers

    By T.R. Sullivan / MLB.com 21 NOV 2013 - 1935 EST

    ARLINGTON -- Prince Fielder, according to the contract he signed with the Tigers, had the right to veto a trade to the Rangers. He chose not to do that, instead accepting a deal that brings him to Texas in exchange for second baseman Ian Kinsler.

    "Obviously it's another great team," Fielder said on Thursday. "I don't think it's a bad thing. Obviously I thought it would be good for everybody. I want everybody to be happy."

    Fielder spoke briefly on a conference call with Texas reporters one day after the Rangers completed the trade with the Tigers. He is scheduled to be formally introduced at a news conference on Monday at the Ballpark in Arlington.

    The trade comes after Fielder spent just two seasons with the Tigers. He signed a nine-year, $214 million contract with them on Jan. 26, 2012, but was traded after hitting .279 with 25 home runs, 106 RBIs and .457 slugging percentage this past season. The home runs and slugging percentage were both career lows for him.

    "Whatever I did last year, I'll do the opposite this year," Fielder said. "It was cool. The season went fine. It is what it is. You can't take it back. We went to the playoffs. We didn't go as far as we wanted to go, but everybody is still alive."

    Fielder was 9-for-40 (.225) with no home runs and no RBIs over 11 playoff games as the Tigers were knocked out in six games by the Red Sox in the American League Championship Series. His playoff struggles were noticed by Tigers fans during the three games of the ALCS at Comerica Park and the reaction was not good.

    Fielder did not express any ill will toward the Tigers even though his stay in Detroit was much shorter than he expected.

    "I understand baseball is a business," Fielder said. "It was all good. We didn't win the World Series ... it happens. It was good. I enjoyed it. I'll miss the fans and miss my teammates, but I'm happy to start new in Texas."

    Now he starts over.

    "It will definitely be different, it will definitely be new," Fielder said. "I'll take it. I'm happy to be in Texas. Hopefully we'll have a good year."

    Fielder, who spent the first seven seasons of his career with the Brewers in the National League, has played 13 games at the Ballpark in Arlington. He is 13-for-49 with four doubles, four home runs, 15 RBIs and a .592 slugging percentage in a ballpark that may be more conducive to his left-handed power swing than Comerica Park. Fielder had a .512 slugging percentage at Comerica, slightly under his career slugging percentage of .527

    "I'm pretty excited about it," Fielder said. "I think it will be great."

    Fielder, who spent part of his childhood living in Irving while his father Cecil was playing in the Major Leagues, also has no problem with the prospect of playing in the Texas summer heat.

    "I kind of like it," Fielder said. "It keeps you loose. It wears you down because I play every day, but the heat is good to get the muscles loose. With me, when it's warm, I feel loose. It will definitely be hot, but I don't think it will be a problem."

    The Rangers pursued Fielder two years ago when he was a free agent. General manager Jon Daniels said Texas did not come close to matching the Tigers' offer, but the background work the club did during the process helped in making this trade.

    Fielder, who has a high regard for manager Ron Washington, suggested it also helped him in deciding to approve the trade.

    "It definitely didn't hurt," Fielder said. "Everybody was real nice. I liked those guys."

    The Rangers didn't sign Fielder back then, but now they have him for seven more years. He has $168 million left on his contract, but the Tigers will send the Rangers $30 million spread out over the final five years of the deal.
    "It ain't braggin' if you can do it." Dizzy Dean

  • #2
    Prince deal likely first course on Texas' hot stove
    Expect Rangers to be big players this offseason beyond acquisition of Fielder

    By Phil Rogers 21 NOV 2013 - 1755 EST

    So much for the Texas Rangers quietly allowing their window of opportunity to close.

    After an uncharacteristically quiet offseason a year ago, when general manager Jon Daniels couldn't pull off an effective counter-punch after the soap opera that ended with Josh Hamilton in Anaheim, the Rangers are determined to show Hamilton and everyone else that Dallas-Fort Worth can be a baseball town.

    This is an ultra-aggressive front office backed by an ownership that is equally unhappy after going two years without a playoff win. The acquisition of Prince Fielder for Ian Kinsler on Wednesday night is expected to be only one of many moves by Daniels & Co.

    The Rangers' front office is back in the pedal-to-the-metal mode that landed Vladimir Guerrero, Cliff Lee, Mike Napoli, Adrian Beltre, Joe Nathan and Yu Darvish in a three-year period, sending the payroll climbing from $68 million to $121 million.

    It was about $125 million on Opening Day 2013, and nobody knows how high it could go this time around, with additional national broadcast revenues putting $150 million into play, according to some theories.

    With Fielder aboard, the Rangers have roughly $110 million committed for 2014, including projections for five arbitration-eligible players, none of whom are non-tender candidates. That means Daniels could be a player for any free agent still on the market, Robinson Cano included, and he could acquire even more flexibility by trading Elvis Andrus, which would allow the 20-year-old Jurickson Profar to play shortstop, maximizing his potential.

    Because Andrus has a salary commitment that falls somewhere between Fielder and Kinsler (he's owed $126,475,000 over nine years), it's a long shot that he would dealt. But moving Profar could open the door to another major trade -- one bringing the Rangers somebody like David Price, Matt Wieters or one of the Cardinals' young guns, from the non- Michael Wacha division (that is, Carlos Martinez or Shelby Miller ).

    Dealing Profar would open second base for Cano, who could give the Rangers' lineup that Nintendo feeling it had when Hamilton, Napoli, Beltre, Kinsler and Nelson Cruz all hit 25-plus home runs in 2011, when Texas won 96 games and the second of its back-to-back pennants. But are Daniels and the team's two co-chairmen, Ray Davis and Bob Simpson, ambitious enough to do a mega-deal with Jay-Z?

    Don't count it out.

    Shortly after the Rangers lost to the Rays in a one-game tiebreaker for a Wild Card spot, Daniels said that the 2014 payroll would be "a little below'' the 2013 figure because attendance had dropped almost 4,000 per game from the record total the previous season. That apparently has changed, which Daniels acknowledged by saying "ownership stepped up'' when Dave Dombrowski called offering Fielder.

    It would be foolish to think these guys only had one big move in mind. Davis and Simpson are proud Texans who are determined to stage the first World Series parade in Texas, and Nolan Ryan's recent resignation has put the organization in a tough position with fans who only recently learned you can tailgate before a baseball game. Mix in the additional national television money, along with the freedom gained when Hamilton and Zack Greinke turned down big contracts last year, and it's a highly fluid dynamic.

    On the free-agent front, don't be surprised if the Rangers move off Brian McCann and become more serious about an outfielder from a group that includes Jacoby Ellsbury, Carlos Beltran, Shin-Soo Choo and Curtis Granderson (Cruz is also still under consideration but seemingly as a fallback more than a priority). The play of 20-year-old top prospect Jorge Alfaro in the Arizona Fall League signals that the rocket-armed Colombian is coming fast, and Dioner Navarro is among the free agents who could platoon with Geovany Soto in a catching platoon.

    Should Masahiro Tanaka reach the market, the Rangers could invest heavily to get him, as they did with Darvish two years ago. You'd be foolish to rule them out on the available free-agent starters like Ubaldo Jimenez and Ervin Santana. Daniels wouldn't give up a first-round pick happily, but the Rangers would get one back if Cruz finds a taker.

    No matter what happens next, the only really crazy possibility is Daniels stopping with Fielder. These guys are in for the full ride.
    "It ain't braggin' if you can do it." Dizzy Dean

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