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, 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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Since: Aug 25, 2006
Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:54 pm

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

Muttz: Don't need much speed to do a HR trot.

Since: Aug 16, 2006
Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:53 pm

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

Verlander won't have to have a MVP year to win 20 games... this is insane/great for Tigers... to think they got him to sign to split time at DH... that is crazy! This is the team to beat, even over the Angels seeing they went so far without him and the year after when V-Mart comes back... slide him at catcher, they will take the hit at defense and Avilla can move else where or they could trade Avilla elsewhere for prospects or more pitching which they would get...

Since: Apr 22, 2008
Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:52 pm

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

A yankees fan commenting on the cost of the contract.
What a joke.

Since: Jun 1, 2007
Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:52 pm

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

Good luck Prince at least you got your cash and won't be playing in the same league as the Crew.

Since: Mar 17, 2009
Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:51 pm

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

Seems like it's all American League teams throwing around money, except the Phillies and Nationals, it's still mostly about pitching in the end though.

Since: Apr 8, 2009
Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:50 pm

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

Wow......the people who SHOULD be hating on this the most are the Indians, Twins, and White Sox fans!!!!!! CAUSE U WONT SEE A DIVISION TITLE FOR THE NEXT DECADE! BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA 
Everyone else who talks shit about money are just HATERS, Every city wants there team to have the best players regardless of the cost!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

Since: Jan 24, 2012
Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:50 pm

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

So much for adding speed to the lineup! Whats the over/under on Tiger team steals for the season? 20??

Since: Feb 10, 2007
Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:50 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 deals 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.

Since: Nov 7, 2011
Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:50 pm

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

This contract is awful.... a terrible decision for Detroit.... Cabrera is an awful 3rd basemen, whats the sense in helping the offense if the defence is terrible, feilder is way out of shape, cant run, not a great 1B ...... it is not going to make detroit a contender any more than they already were

Since: Jan 10, 2010
Posted on: January 24, 2012 3:49 pm

Prince Fielder signs with the Tigers

i wish my cardinals wouldve signed em but im just glad he is outa the division. great deal for both sides. detroit tigers are a 1st class organization and no doubt the best team in the AL central.

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