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 18, 2007
Posted on: January 24, 2012 4:43 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

lol @ the jealous fans.  Maybe we'll steal Oswalt from the Sox while we're at it.  You know he just licked his chops when he saw this signing.



Since: Aug 16, 2006
Posted on: January 24, 2012 4:43 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

NIIIIIICE!!!!!!!!!!   As an ANGELS fan this is AWESOME!!!!!!   I think we can all sigh with great relief that Fielder will not be a Ranger!  hahahahah  WHew!



Since: May 2, 2007
Posted on: January 24, 2012 4:39 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

shortstop52, what do you mean you still have Front Row Amy?  And if your a Pirates fan.....i still feel sorry for you!



Since: Jun 25, 2009
Posted on: January 24, 2012 4:35 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

Short term .. probably work out pretty good.   BUT ... long term, this is a God aweful deal on so many levels it's laughable.   Prince is 28 .. he'll be 29 in May .. and as a young guy he's already struggling with massive weight problems.   When he gets over the 30 hump, this guy will explode as his metabolism slows down.   A guy like this could literally lose his skills over night.  The only saving grace is that he went to an American League team and maybe that buys him a couple of years cuz he can DH.   Teams signing these long term  haven't seen the back end just yet .. but when they do, they will regret the day they ever made such ludicris commitments.   No way this guy's body holds up when he hits his thirtys .. so enjoy it while you can.   Bad move.

SoxCelts. What the hell are you talking about man?  This guy is a monster of a hitter and he's only turning 28 years old shortly after opening day.   Even if he gives the Tigers 6 awesome years and 3 mediocre ones at the end he's worth every penny.  He's only played 6 full seasons in MLB and has over 100 rbi's in 4 of the last 5 seasons.  A career year last year....  stay off the drugs man



Since: May 12, 2008
Posted on: January 24, 2012 4:35 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

As far as free agent signings go in the city of Detroit this one tops them all in my 33 years ! Big thanks to the Ilitch family for making this happen and as far as the the talk about spending so much for a dh and already having Cabrera at first is ludicrous.  First off using Fielder as a DH will prolong his career and most likely allow him to hit the way he has for the remainder of the contract. Not to mention the the rest he will be able to give Cabrera at times will also help him him stay healthy.  We will now have two potential hall of famers in the middle of our lineup who are both in there prime and throw in arguably the best pitcher in baseball who also is in his prime you have yourself a spectacular nucleus for a contending team.  As far as for when Martinez returns what happens between now and the point when he is deemed healthy will detrmine his fate. I am beyond excited for this upcoming season I cannot wait !! On a side note it would be nice if down the line the Tigers somehow get Prince to speak to Cecil and maybe bring them out together before a game.



Since: Mar 17, 2009
Posted on: January 24, 2012 4:35 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

Picture of Prince Fielder at end of career in Detroit:





Since: May 2, 2007
Posted on: January 24, 2012 4:35 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

he also hit behind the second best player on the team.  makes a difference when you have a great hitter hitting behind you.  makes pitchers actually pitch instead of being cowards and walking you all the time on 4 balls.  

anyways, im totally surprised by this signing.  just made a comment today that i thought he would resign with the Brewers for 1 year and see how next year goes.  Wow was I wrong.  But I love how all the professionals out there didnt even mention Detroits name.  So my question is how professional are these writers if the team he signs with didnt even show up on their radar?  thats why i say ill believe it when i see it.  

I think this is a great signing by Detroit.  Dont care what people think about his weight...if you've been watching him his whole career you would know he is thinner now than when he came up.  Supposedly eats healthy...not sure cause Ive never eaten with him but just saying.  They will be able to make him happy because he will get to play the field half the time and DH(rest) the other half.  At first I thought Carbrerra might move to 3B but doesnt look like thats going to happen.  

My only question is why sign with your dad's former team? Especially if you want nothing to do with your dad.........And the only answer I can come up with is MONEY! 



Since: Jun 5, 2011
Posted on: January 24, 2012 4:34 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

This is a bit of a surprise and even tho the initial deal for 9 years is crazy, I'm sure there's some opt out options for both the Tigers and Fielder.  Cabrera is going to benefit greatly by hitting in front of him, as if he needs any help.  Also, this is good news for the Pirates, no more Pujols, Fielder and Braun's gone for 50.  There is hope in the Burgh.  On the bright side for the Brew Crew, at least you still have Front Row Amy, so far...



Since: Jan 24, 2012
Posted on: January 24, 2012 4:33 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

Don't forget about opt out clauses, which are common in long term contracts.



Since: Jan 15, 2008
Posted on: January 24, 2012 4:33 pm
 

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

"robust" - How's that for a great way to say 'overweight'?!

I'm with those who are wondering what Votto will be worth now.  And the Reds traded their best 1B prospect.  Ugh.


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