Thursday, February 16, 2006

Prince Fielder: Pontoon Walking

When Prince Fielder fell to the Milwaukee Brewers as a 17-year-old first-round draft pick, the team was thrilled to capitalize on the resulting publicity as the team attempted to sell boxes and season tickets in a brand new, multimillion-dollar stadium. Fielder generated the ink not only because he was the son of former Tigers superstar Cecil Fielder, but because he projects as the potential first man to wade across Lake Michigan without getting his hair wet. Prince Fielder is huge. When players come down the runway to the dugout, they don't walk with him, they walk among him. That's not to say he's fat, but it should be noted that he occupies his own grid square on the Google satellite images. Though scouts say he has good hands, at his size he is hardly agile at first base and will tempt management to bench him frequently for late inning defensive replacement, with Billy Hall a likely beneficiary. Fielder has a high upside, but all things considered, it is possible that Fielder will get no more than 500 ABs, and might not have a whole lot more than 400, making him a significant risk to use as a key component of your infield.