Kelly Gavin, Texas Rangers
Prince Fielder has hit behind three straight league MVPs.
First, it was in Milwaukee with Ryan Braun, who hit ahead of Fielder en route to a historic season that was quickly tainted by PED usage. Then, the past two seasons, Fielder has hit behind arguably the greatest hitter in the game's history in Miguel Cabrera, who won the Triple Crown in 2012 and came dang close in 2013.
But instead of hitting cleanup with his new team, Texas Rangers manager Ron Washington has made the decision to put Fielder in the No. 3 spot in the order — usually reserved for the club's best, most dangerous hitter, and leave Adrian Beltre in the cleanup spot in the Rangers' order.
"I think it's going to be outstanding," Fielder told ESPN Dallas. "I like it a lot. I'm definitely not upset about it. No. 1, he's [Beltre] a great hitter. He has power. He can hit for average and drive in runs. So any time you get to hit in front of a guy like that, it's not going to hurt."
Beltre said at the team's banquet on Friday that he believes Fielder will win the league MVP with the protection he'll provide hitting behind him. And Beltre added when talking to ESPN that he's excited to not only have Fielder added to the lineup, but projected leadoff hitter Shin-Soo Choo, as well.
"We added two great hitters," Beltre said. "One big producing guy that we know in Fielder, playing against him over the years he's been unbelievable. And Choo, I know him for a while back when I played with him in Seattle and we know what kind of guy he is. He's going to get on base however he can, plus he's got some pop, too, and some defense. The additions we got are really good."