Prince Fielder #84 of the Texas Rangers scores on a wild pitch by relief pitcher Dominic Leone #52 of the Seattle Mariners in the sixth inning at Safeco Field on April 25, 2014 in Seattle, Washington.
Almost a month into the baseball season and Prince Fielder isn’t carrying his weight.
He isn’t hitting it, either.
Fielder, the prize acquisition of the Texas Rangers’ off-season, has done little to contribute to the team’s surprising 15-10 start. He went hitless Sunday with a strikeout as the Rangers blew a 5-0 lead in a loss to the Mariners that cost them the series in Seattle.
Through 15 percent of the season, the 275-pound Fielder is hitting a light .209. More troubling, he’s hit only two homers with 8 RBI. By comparison, Kevin Kouzmanoff has two homers and 10 RBI, in half as many at-bats. And the guy Fielder was traded for – Tigers’ second baseman Ian Kinsler – has two homers, 14 RBI and is hitting .278.
No way around it, it’s been an awful first month for the Rangers’ star.
“He’s struggling,” Rangers’ manager Ron Washington told reporters in Seattle about Fielder. “There really is no explanation. But in May, June, July, August, if he does what Prince Fielder does, I won’t care about April. I’ll wait on Prince Fielder because he has the ability to carry us on his back. And when we need to get on his back, his back is going to be fresh.”
The most surprising part about Fielder’s struggles has been his ability to produce runs. In each of his eight opportunities this season, he’s failed to get a runner home from third with less than two outs.
No way this continues. At some point Fielder’s stats will get fat.
A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.