Prince Fielder AL MVP?
At the Rangers team banquet last week the teams third basemen Adrian Beltre made quite a bold statement “He’s going to get the MVP,” Adrian Beltre…It’s his time to win it. My job is to protect him so that he gets there.” Here’s why I believe that it might not be as crazy as it sounds.
In his time at Detroit, Fielder batted 4th protecting Miguel Cabrera. Well, it’s no coincidence that in those 2 years Miggy won 2 MVPs. Here in Texas, Fielder will be protected by Adrian Beltre who in his time in Texas has been one of the best hitters in the AL if not all of baseball. And out of respect for Beltre, Fielder will receive more than a fair share amount of “hittable” pitches. Fielder also will have the luxury of batting behind one of the best leadoff batters in the game, as well a very crafty base runner in Elvis Andrus. This could provide Fielder with multiple opportunities to drive in runs almost every game.
The Ballpark in Arlington
The Ballpark in Arlington is widely regarded as a hitter’s park. Many a great players that have donned a Rangers jersey have had career years while playing in Arlington. There are two key factors that make me believe the ballpark will help Fielder’s numbers return similar to what they were in Milwaukee. First of all, the jet stream that picks up during the summer in Arlington. It causes what can be routine pop-ups to leave the yard, and a man with Fielder’s power will certainly benefit from that. Second, the dimensions of the ballpark in Arlington to that of Comerica Park in Detroit. Even though Fielder still had great numbers in Detroit they paled in comparison to his numbers in Milwaukee. The Rangers ballpark is closer in dimensions to Miller Park and it has an even shorter right porch, which does can do wonders for a power lefty.
In 2013 Mitch Moreland had 23 homers in a year which he was injured in June and never regained his power stroke. So, replace that with a stronger and more durable Fielder and there’s no reason to believe that he can’t hit between 40 to 50 homers and drive in 110+ runs. Since 2006 the fewest amount of games prince has missed in a single season is 5. In today’s game where managers give rest days and the wear and tear of the daily grind causes players to miss at least 10 games a season Fielder has only missed 13 including none in 4 out of the past 5 seasons. He’s an iron man with mighty strong bat and because of which in the last 8 seasons he’s averaging 36 homers and 109 RBI’s. WOW!!! That production over that time span is replicated by at max 2 or 3 other major leaguers.
As you can see the numbers and production speak for themselves. I believe the change of scenery will bring about a new energized Prince Fielder, and that Prince Fielder will be one that NOBODY will enjoy facing. I don’t believe in karma, but I do think what goes around comes around. In the last 3 seasons the 3 people who Prince protected went on to win the MVP. It’s only fitting that he now gets the luxury of being protected by a great hitter. So when the 2014 season is over I believe the headlines will read:
’Prince Fielder 2014 American League MVP’