Fielder's big bat heads to Detroit

January, 24, 2012
1/24/12
5:59
PM ET

AP Photo/Jeffrey PhelpsPrince Fielder ranks among baseball's most prolific power hitters.
Prince Fielder has agreed to terms on a nine-year, $214 million contract with the Tigers.

This will be the fourth-largest contract, in terms of total value, in MLB history, trailing the two contracts signed by Alex Rodriguez ($275 million and $252 million) and the contract signed by Albert Pujols this offseason ($240 million).

Fielder ranks second in the majors with 200 home runs since 2007, and also ranks in the top five in that span in RBI, slugging percentage, and OPS.

In 2011, he ranked in the top two in the majors in games, home runs, RBI, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage.

Fielder joins a Tigers team that had a lineup spot to fill after it lost Victor Martinez to a torn ACL. The Tigers finished in the top four in the American League in runs scored, batting average, and OPS last season, and were seventh in the AL with 169 home runs.

Fielder averaged 20 home runs per season at Miller Park over the last six seasons, but will now play his home games at Comerica Park.

Since Comerica opened in 2000, the most home runs hit by a left-handed hitter there is 14, by Carlos Pena in 2005.

Since 2009, left-handed hitters hit 209 home runs at Miller Park, and hit 174 in Brewers road games, giving the park a Ballpark Factor of 116 for left-handed hitters, sixth-highest in the majors.

In the same span, left-handed hitters hit 191 home runs at Comerica Park and 213 home runs in Tigers road games, giving Comerica Park, a Park Factor of 89. That's eighth-lowest in the majors for left-handed hitters.

Last season at Miller Park, Fielder hit 77 fly balls, 22 of which went for home runs. On the road, he hit 85 fly balls, 13 of which were home runs.

Fielder ranks among the game's top hitters in terms of situational offensive contribution, with almost identical numbers as Pujols.

Over the last three seasons, Fielder ranks third among all players in Win Probability Added, which rates player performance on a play-by-play basis. Fielder added approximately 17.5 wins to his team with his offensive production, trailing only Joey Votto (19.9 wins) and Albert Pujols (18 wins).

Fielder ranks fifth among first baseman in the advanced metric, Wins Above Replacement, with 15.3 wins contributed over the last three seasons, trailing Pujols (21.5), Votto (18.9), new teammate Miguel Cabrera (18.9), and Adrian Gonzalez (18.0).

Fielder’s defensive value can be evaluated with the metric Defensive Runs Saved, which rates players based on the skills most pertinent to their position. That stat shows that Fielder has cost his team 48 runs since 2006, 10 more than any other first baseman in that span.

Prince will become one of several notable father-son pairs to play for the same team at some point in their career, joining the likes of the Bonds’ (San Francisco Giants) and Griffey’s (Cincinnati Reds, Seattle Mariners).

Prince’s father, Cecil Fielder, hit 245 home runs as a first baseman for the Tigers in the 1990s. That ranks fifth-most in team history. For Fielder to match his father, he would have to average approximately 27.2 home runs per season.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Comments

You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?