He's 5 feet-11 inches, 270 pounds, backs down to no one, and seldom takes a day off. Scouts once overlooked him...called him too fat, but six years into his young career, he's bigger than anyone ever imagined...as a player that is.
We all know the numbers. Prince Fielder enters the 2011 season with 192 career homeruns..all, of course, as a Brewer. Only Cecil Cooper (201), Gorman Thomas (208), Geoff Jenkins (212), and Robin Yount (251) stand in the way of Prince being the all time Brewers home run hitter. Spectacular! A franchise 40 years old on the brink of crowing a new king in how many seasons? He's gonna be damn close at season's end. Real close. Too close. Pass the hat for Prince!
Opponents see the Brewers on the schedule and cringe at the thought of Prince Fielder standing at home plate. No team quietly slips in and out of Miller Park. Prince Fielder is the force behind the Milwaukee Brewers. He is not replaceable.
Fan-based movements have stuffed all-star ballot boxes and sent their favorite players to the stars. So why can't 10,000 Brewer fans fork over one dollar during 81 Brewer home games? Of course, the 800 thousand dollars would be spare change to a Scott Boras bank, but it's the thought that counts...right?
How could Prince not be moved by the collective effort? And ditto for Rickie Weeks. But that's not how baseball works in 2011...how baseball worked ever! and it never will because baseball is a business and always has been. So, if it's a business, we, as consumers are supposed to have a say. Anything else leaves me feeling like a Dokken song...a puppet on a string with no power whatsoever. Pass the hat for Prince and if the effort fails? well, the scoreboard will need some new speakers.
Imagine Milwaukee rallying all season long with Prince Fielder charity buckets, benefit concerts, door to door canvassing, and somewhere along the way local musicians will pen a song or two. Fox would be forced to televise a game from Milwaukee where something would be "really brewing." Tim McCarver would make a caricature of the attempt and recall the sorrow of a city that lost its Braves and couldn't sign Sabbathia. Not a problem. Milwaukee thrived in the echo of Casey Stengel's branding Milwaukee "Bush league. Milwaukee will thrive again.
But the Brewer without Fielder....well, let's not even think about it. I remember some memorable Prince Fielder homeruns, opposite field doubles, long pitch counts resulting in walks. But what I remember more than anything else is Prince taunting Matt Capps, pushing Manny Parra, and the grammy of em all...The Prince..the Tasmanian devil grunting like a pit bull-waiting for Guillermo Mota to emerge from the Dodgers clubhouse after a beaning incident. If you missed that one, here is the link. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FGJ1kzDerqw&NR=1
Prince Fielder is a locomotive train, a force of nature. There will be no statues carved in Prince's honor. He is no diplomat. He simply plays to win and if anyone messes with him or any of his teammates, there will be hell to pay. Prince Fielder is not replaceable
Pass the hat for Prince.