The 2022 MLB Hall of Fame ballot is out. After no players were elected in 2021, there will be a lot of attention on this one. 13 players are making their first appearance on the ballot, while 4 are on the ballot for the last time. One of the new players is former Milwaukee Brewer great Prince Fielder, who is making his first appearance on the ballot.
Fielder had a twelve-year career in the majors, seven of those came with the Brewers.He debuted in 2005 and played 37 games, and from there became a Brewers legend. Over his seven seasons, he hit 230 home runs while batting .282/.390/.540. He was incredibly durable, with a low of 157 games played in 2006 and a full 162 games played in 2009 and 2011. He was an All-Star in 2007, 2009, and 2011, and earned MVP votes in four of his seasons with the team. In the Brewers record books, he’s second in OBP (.390), second in SLG (.540), 9th in runs scored (571), 8th in total bases (1904), 3rd in home runs (230), 7th in RBI (656), 4th in walks (566), 6th in extra base hits (439), and 1st in intentional walks (115). He also holds the Brewers record for home runs (50), RBI (141), walks (114), and extra base hits (87) in a season.
Even though he was a franchise player in his time with the team, he was always destined to hit the free agent market, and did once his arbitration years were up after the 2011 season. He signed with the Detroit Tigers on a 9 year/$214 million contract. The next two seasons were spent with the Tigers, where he was still very reliable and played all 162 games in those two seasons. He was also an All-Star in both seasons with the Tigers and was in the MVP vote in 2012 as well. However, following the 2013 season, the Tigers traded him to the Rangers for Ian Kinsler. That is where Fielder’s career started to tumble. Neck issues ended his 2014 season early and he needed surgery to repair it. He came back in 2015 and seemed to be his old self, playing 158 games and earning another All-Star appearance (his 6th), another appearance on the MVP ballot, and was named comeback player of the year. Unfortunately, the neck injury returned in 2016 and he needed a second surgery to repair it. Doctors would not clear him to return to play following that surgery, and it ended his career at the age of 32.
Also appearing on the ballot for the eighth time is former Brewer Gary Sheffield. He began his career with the Brewers, playing four seasons for the team. However, those early years aren’t remembered fondly by many. He batted .259/.319/.376 with 21 home runs and 133 RBI in 294 games played for the Brewers. He was traded before the 1992 season to the Padres in a five player trade.
Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference.