The Detroit Tigers signed first baseman Prince Fielder to a nine-year deal worth $214 million and instantly became contenders in the American League.
Detroit made a solid run in the postseason last year, defeating the New York Yankees in the AL Divisional Series before being knocked out by the Texas Rangers in the AL Championship Series. With a majority of the team coming back, plus the addition of Fielder, expect the Tigers to make a serious World Series run.
Fielder is regarded as one of the greatest power hitters in the game today and could finish his career with legendary numbers if he stays healthy. With Miguel Cabrera in the lineup, Fielder will feel right at home creating a new dynamic duo similar to the one he had with Ryan Braun. There is speculation that with the signing Cabrera will now move to third base, a position he has plenty of experience playing.
One of the reasons Prince did not want to go to the American League was because he enjoys playing first base every day and had no interest in becoming a designated hitter. Unfortunately, there is a good chance he will have to play DH at some point in the next nine years but I am sure that is something he can live with after the mega-deal he signed.
Detroit’s general manager Dave Dombrowski spoke on MLB Network last week about how he didn’t know if the Tigers would be able to sign Fielder.
“Of course we’d consider Prince Fielder,” Dombrowksi said. “But realistically, it’s probably not a good fit.”
With the loss of Victor Martinez for the season with a left knee injury, the Tigers had to make an executive decision to ensure the success of the organization. They did that and then some by signing Fielder long-term.
In 998 career games, Fielder has 571 runs, 200 doubles, 9 triples, 230 home runs, 656 RBI, 566 walks, 779 strikeouts and a .282 batting average.