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Blog Entry

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:02 pm
Edited on: January 24, 2012 7:04 pm
 


By Matt Snyder


Chalk up one more for the so-called mystery team. First it was Cliff Lee going to the Phillies, then Albert Pujols heading to the Angels. Now Prince Fielder has shocked the baseball world by signing with the Detroit Tigers, a team that hadn't even been remotely connected to him in rumors the entire offseason. The robust first baseman has signed a nine-year contract worth $214 million, CBSSports.com insider Jon Heyman has learned.

The Tigers were recently dealt what appeared to be a pretty severe blow, as Victor Martinez tore his ACL and could miss the entire 2012 season. So there went Miguel Cabrera's lineup protection, right? Think again. Owner Mike Ilitch really wants to win a World Series championship and this signing indicates one of the strongest reactions one can even imagine to news like that.

Prince to Tigers
Heyman also notes that the finalists to land Fielder were the Nationals, Tigers and one other "mystery team." So it's entirely possible the Nationals would have come away with Fielder had Martinez not torn his ACL. It's funny how things work sometimes.

A Fielder-Cabrera combo in the middle of that order will dominate AL Central pitching. Throw Justin Verlander into the mix, and the Tigers have three of baseball's biggest stars.

Fielder, 27, hit .299/.415/.566 with 38 homers, 120 RBI, 95 runs and 36 doubles last season for the NL Central champion Brewers. He finished third in MVP voting and also took home the All-Star Game MVP. Though Fielder is a large man, he is as durable as they come. He hasn't played in less than 157 games in a season since becoming a regular. He played in all 162 last season, following up seasons where he appeared in 161 and 162 games, respectively.

The smart money with Fielder and Cabrera is a split at first base, with the other serving as the designated hitter. Then again, what if the Tigers got nuts and tried to shove Cabrera back across the diamond to play third base again -- where he began his career? That would mean the infield defense would be awful, but would also leave room for a better hitting DH than Brandon Inge (who, at this point, looks like the third baseman). And if Victor Martinez comes back healthy? It works even better.

The Tigers won the AL Central by 15 games last season. Even if Martinez misses all of the 2012 season, Fielder is a pretty sizeable upgrade to the offense. So it would appear the division is the Tigers' to lose.

For now, though, the only details that really matter are that Prince Fielder is heading to Detroit -- where his father once held down the middle of the order -- and he's going to make a whole lot of money.



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Comments

Since: Dec 4, 2010
Posted on: January 24, 2012 5:09 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

Yes, he is a large man - just ask his knees- and now he is carrying that heavy wallet around to boot.  My guess he is a full time DH in two years.  But, hey, way to go Tigers!  He and Albert both are out of the NL Central. Go, Reds!!!!



Since: Aug 13, 2008
Posted on: January 24, 2012 5:08 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

He'll be Mo Vaughn in about 3 years.



Since: Aug 24, 2006
Posted on: January 24, 2012 5:07 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

I wonder what the Tigers budget is for food, booze and chew between Fielder, Cabrera and Leyland?



Since: Dec 4, 2010
Posted on: January 24, 2012 5:07 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

"...though Fielder is a large man..."  And his knees are very aware of that. And now he's carrying around that heavy wallet to boot.  My bet is he is an everyday DH in two years.  His Def IS suspect.  But, hey, way to go Detroit!  I am happy he and Albert are both out of the NL Central. Go, Reds!!!!   



Since: Jan 18, 2008
Posted on: January 24, 2012 5:03 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

only problem I see is that fielder goes from a hitters park to a pitchers park. Move in the walls please or his numbers will suffer severely.



Since: Jun 10, 2011
Posted on: January 24, 2012 5:03 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

If only he were as good as Daddy Fielder was in Detroit...lol.



Since: Dec 23, 2008
Posted on: January 24, 2012 5:02 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

Congrats Tigers fans. This guy has a lot of RBI's in him. He will (barring any major injury) be a offensive powerhouse.

I wonder if dad had something to do with this. Detroit had one of the best long ball hitters with his dad and now the fans will get to enjoy watching the ball leave the park with his boy. 




Since: Jan 25, 2007
Posted on: January 24, 2012 5:01 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

"Behind Verlander, who's going to get the outs? You still have Porcello and Scherzer, who can be hot or cold on any given outing. There are going to be some high scoring affairs in the Motor City this year."


umm maybe you didnt hear of him but we still do have doug fister who was a stud down the stretch last year.......how many teams have 4 number 1's anyways?   i see your a cleveland fan....id put detroits staff against clevelands or anyone elses in the AL central this year....but no other AL central team can come close to our line up...throw in the best closer last year....wow!



Since: May 29, 2009
Posted on: January 24, 2012 5:01 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

I'm a Yankee fan who is more then happy to have Tex
Yeah -- I'm sure the Yankee fans are ecstatic at the fact Tex has hit .254 and .248 the last two years.  The Yankees would take Fielder in a heart beat if they could find someone to take Tex off their hands.  Unless he finds his bat -- he isn't going anywhere but NY.



Since: Jan 16, 2012
Posted on: January 24, 2012 5:00 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

With Fielder now in the AL with Detroit, he can DH and not even have to play defense at all at first base or anywhere else. His weight issues would be less of a problem, and if he belts his usual number out of the park, running the bases would not be a bother — at least for those hits.


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com