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Sports

November 22, 2013

Fielder sees trade to Rangers as a fresh start

Prince Fielder could have vetoed the blockbuster swap of All-Star players that sent him to the Texas Rangers less than two years after signing his big deal with Detroit.

The slugging first baseman decided to take the fresh start with a new team.

“Obviously, it’s another good team, “ Fielder said Thursday, a day after being sent to Texas for second baseman Ian Kinsler. “I didn’t think it was going to be a bad thing and plus, most of all, I thought it was going to be good for everyone. I just wanted everyone to be happy.”

Fielder was only two seasons into the $214 million, nine-year contract he signed with Detroit before the 2012 season, when the Rangers were also a suitor. Their offer was nowhere close to what the five-time All-Star got then.

While playing all 324 regular-season games for the Tigers the past two seasons, Fielder hit .295 with 55 home runs and 214 RBIs. But his 25 homers this year were his fewest over a full season, and he didn’t drive in a run in 11 postseason games before Detroit lost the AL championship series to Boston in six games.

“It was cool. The season was fine. It is what it is bro,” Fielder said during a brief conference call with Rangers beat writers. “You can’t take it back. Everything is cool. We got to the playoffs. Unfortunately we didn’t get where we wanted to go.”

The Rangers plan to formally introduce Fielder in a news conference Monday.

Fielder provides Texas manager Ron Washington with a middle-of-the-order threat in a lineup that still includes Adrian Beltre and Alex Rios, filling one of the team’s primary offseason wants even before baseball’s winter meetings.

“It gives us some direction the rest of our offseason,” general manager Jon Daniels said late Wednesday night.

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