Amid rumors about a high-profile departure, Texas Rangers’ general manager Jon Daniels yesterday was quashing talk of a signature departure.
Cliff Lee might be coming, but Prince Fielder isn’t going.
“We haven’t had conversations about Prince with other clubs,” Daniels told reporters Tuesday night at the Winter Meetings in Nashville. “We’re open to talk about anything with other teams, but I don’t want to create concern.”
Fielder’s salary is a burden at $24 million per season. But lessening the hit for Texas is the fact that the Tigers will pay a portion ($5 million) starting next year through 2020. His bat in 2015, obviously, a precious commodity as he hit .305 with 28 doubles and 23 homers. He was the Rangers’ lone All-Star, the AL’s Comeback Player of the Year and a solid teammate who became the full-time designated hitter in deference to Mitch Moreland’s better defensive skills at 1st base.
The idea of bringing back Lee to Arlington feels like Fantasy Baseball at what is likely an exorbitant salary. But putting him, if healthy, into a rotation with Yu Darvish, Cole Hamels and Derek Holland would make any GM salivate.
“If he’s healthy he could certainly help anybody,” Daniels said. “I just don’t know if he’s going to be in our price range.”
Lee missed all of 2015 with a flexor tendon tear. In 2010 the Rangers acquired him at the trade deadline and he pitched them to their first World Series.
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 lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.