Dissecting The Prince Fielder For Ian Kinsler Trade
By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner): Follow @chuckbooth3024
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After having a late phone call chat with our “Chief Writer” Hunter Stokes, I officially welcomed him to the world of being a sportswriter.
Hunter wrote an awesome piece on the Rangers State Of The Union yesterday. In the article found here, he explained that Jon Daniels needs a power bat, and must address the Jurickson Profar/Elvis Andrus situation.
Well, no more than 6 hours later, Daniels pulled off the trade for the big lugging 1B, and now we will have to add a part 2 to yesterday’s feature article.
I like the move for the AL West resident’s. Prince Fielder‘s Left Handed Bat will be a most welcomed addition to the foray in Texas.
Prince Fielder 2013 Highlights – Mature Lyrics so Parental Guidance Is Advised
This club has several of its Starting Pitchers locked up, and now you have Elvis Andrus locked up til 2022, Adrian Beltre til 2016 and Profar under team control for 6 more years.
With Fielder coming over for what amounts to be a 7 YR/$138 MIL contract, it is a great score.
Throwing Kinsler back the other way solves the Infield dilemma, and what is best about this acquisition, is that you have likely solved your DH/1B position.
I think it is a good move for Texas to have Prince Fielder have the majority of his At Bats from the DH position, as Mitch Moreland is a better fielding 1B.
However where this works is being flexible. The Rangers can also place Fielder at DH, and could even put Moreland in the OF.
I do think the club could really step up and sign a player like Curtis Granderson now for the RF slot. He is way cheaper than Cruz, and you could likely have his services for less years and term.
Leonys Martin will now be counted on a lot more in the CF spot.
The team has plenty of offense, and 3 Gold Glove Caliber fielders in Adrian Beltre, Elvis Andrus and Jurickson Profar. They should keep the middle in good standing by having the speedy Martin play there as well.
If the team can’t sign Brian McCann, there also may be a market for the club to sign Free Agent OF Shin-Soo Choo.
This is the kind of guy they need. A huge OBP player to lead off for the team. You can slot Andrus in the 2nd spot, then bat Beltre, Fielder, Rios and whoever your Catcher, DH are.
At the tail end of the lineup, you can bet Martin and Profar, and they would work for great speed, as the order is flipped back up to the top.
Prince Fielder should relish playing in a hitter friendly “The Ballpark In Arlington”. I also like moving him to DH, because the hot Texas heat will wreak havoc on the big man.
Having said this, Jon Daniels and Ron Washington have to sit him down and go over some things…
Namely, forget about his stupid consecutive streak mark. With playing in Texas, everyone needs a day off once in a while.
I am sure the fans and brass alike will respect that Fielder comes to work everyday, however this sort of thing will gain heavy traction if Fielder gets off to a bad start in his 1st year with the Rangers.
Secondly, they must ask him to start losing the weight. At age 29 he is still relatively young, but as you approach that 30 year old mark, poundage does play a factor.
A great divide would be for Fielder to DH about 50% of the time, and see the field the other 50%.
Fielder really helps a club that is kind of impatient with their top hitters like Andrus, Beltre and Rios by walking a lot.
The final tally of how much money this deal actual costs them is about $4 MIL per year between 2014 – 2017, as Kinsler was due to make about $16 MIL per campaign.
So this frees up the club to make other significant moves.
The next guy on the FA list has to be another guy like him for that reason.
The franchise could also elect to sign a guy like Jacoby Ellsbury.
Fielder is consistent, plays everyday, and where his power has slipped a little over the last 2 years, his OBP was still .387 in Detroit, as opposed to his Milwaukee days at .390.
The Rangers should also be commended for jumping ahead of the Robinson Cano potential deal, because it is looking more like there is no market for him but to resign with New York.
Texas also ensured they have made some moves prior to the Winter Meetings in a few weeks.
They should not be done. This organization has some serious $ to be thrown around if it wants to. There is a need for an OF, a Catcher, and possibly a Utility player.
Mitch Moreland could also be used a trade chip for some back end Starting Rotation Depth. You would need to sign someone else first before you do that.
The Rangers upgraded big time on this.
From Detroit’s view.
At 31 years old, Kinsler has his worst numbers for his 8 year Career in the MLB during the 2013 season. But he still managed to score 85 Runs.
4 times in his 8 years, the man has scored 100 Runs or more. With Detroit flashing Miguel Cabrera, Martinez, and a host of other offensive players, Kinsler could have a decent renaissance with the Tigers.
I am just not sure Kinsler is that much better than Austin Jackson at leading off at this junction of time.
Detroit will like his all out hustle, the man from originally from Tucson, AZ also has an impressive Post Season 3 Slash Line of .311/.422/.905 – in 122 playoff AB.
The 3 time ALL- Star is a good player, but to pick him up in a straight up trade for Fielder (and lose $30 MIL to cover the Rangers) does not sit well with me.
I don’t like this move at this exact monent, but that could be tempered with their next move with the money freed up from the Fielder contract.
$68 Million is a lot of money to save up over the next 7 years, but the team also needs to replace some of that power in the lineup with Fielder now being gone – IN 2014.
The Tigers will now need a 3B for 2014 if Cabrera is moving back to 1B. I know they have Nick Castellanos potentially there, as their top prospect.
I don’t think you can count on the kid when it is your ultimate goal to win a World Series Title next season.
Kinsler has a bit of speed, decent power still, and is a decent fielder at 2B. This was more of getting out under the Fielder contract, and perhaps the team growing tired of his October failures.
By chopping off three years on the end of Fielder’s contract, it will also give the team more financial flexibility to try to resign Cabrera when he is up for Free Agency in 2016.
It is hard to spread the money out, with both the 2 time reigning MVP and Fielder, you would have salaries that approached $50 MIL combined per year.
When you add Justin Verlander, than over 50% of your team payroll would be pocketed by 3 men.
By Detroit making this transaction, it may have also extended their competition window for many more years past 2014, even if regressing their chance next season.
This is another reason why Detroit should sign 2 or 3 more Free Agents.
In the long term, the club will also have to think about the longevity of Miguel Cabrera in the field.
If I were Detroit, I would have Cabrera only play in the field for one more year – and then have him as their permanent DH.
Yes the money would be crazy for the position, but look at Cabrera at that aspect of the lineup – and it makes sense, you pay him to mash the ball – not to field.
This Team Can’t Be Done with This Move.
The club should sign at least 3 Relievers if they decide to move Smyly back to the Rotation. But we will save that for a State Of The Union Address for Detroit.
As far as a 1B on the market….The perfect name to replace Fielder at 1B would be Justin Morneau.
He may not possess the power that Fielder has, but he has come back to being a good average hitter, with extra base pop, and he would not cost a fortune to sign long – term.
Morneau is also familiar with the AL Central.
The Starting Pitching is so solid I would not worry about it
What you have done is effectively figured out your 2nd Base problem.
You could potentially try to sign Jhonny Peralta to come back to your team at the hot corner – if you move Cabrera to 1B instead. What is enticing about that, is that you don’t have to forfeit a conditional draft pick for his services.
While the trade may work out for the long haul, Detroit needs to sign someone else for next year with the dollars saved this campaign.
There is talk of Carlos Beltran already, potentially taking over the LF spot.
Whatever the Tigers do, they will need a LHB, who has a healthy OBP, to take over the power Fielder’s ‘Louisville Slugger’ vacated with.
Detroit needs to try to sign Choo, Ellsbury or another LHB as an OF themselves.
The team also could use that money to resign Max Scherzer long-term right now, and then trade away another Starting Pitcher for an OF or 3B.
But if you ask me about this trade today, I don’t like it all. Fielder at least ensures the club gets you back to the cusp of the ALCS in 2014.
Kinsler is an injury risk, and now with a Right Handed heavy lineup, and Right Handed Pitching Staff, the team doesn’t match up with all late inning moves – and especially in the Post Season when those AB count the most.
I like to use the template of a franchise having a 4 – 5 year window to win a World Series Championship.
Once time wears on, and everybody becomes more expensive with contracts, this diminishes your chances to be back at the promise land.
I feel Detroit jumped the gun on this one year early. I would have listened to trade discussion on Max Scherzer. Your team has $40 MIL committed to your two top Starters already, and Scherzer is a RHP.
This team can’t afford to pay a 2nd Starter that much moolah – when Anibal Sanchez makes $16 MIL per year for the next 4 years – and Verlander is on the books for even more than that.
Dave Dombrowski still has a lot of work to do this winter. I will be prepared to revisit this article on Apr.01/2014.
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Posted on November 21, 2013, in MLB Teams State Of the Unions, MLB Teams: Articles and Analysis, The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged @MLBreports on twitter, adrian beltre, al central, AL West, alex ríos, anibal sanchez, Brian McCann, brian wilson, Chuck Booth. fastest 30 ballgames, dave dombrowski, detroit tigers, doug fister, Drew Smyly, elvis andrus, ian kinsler, jacoby ellsbury, jhonny peralta, Joaquin Benoit, joe nathan, jon daniels, jurickson profar, justin morneau, miguel cabrera, milwaukee brewers, mitch moreland, nelson cruz, nick castellanos, omar infante, prince fielder, rick porcello, ryan braun, shin-soo choo, texas rangers, Torii Hunter, victor martinez. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.