Aug. 04, 2016
Did the Detroit Tigers Pull One Over on the Texas Rangers?
The Texas Rangers and Detroit Tigers made a blockbuster trade after the 2013 season. Ian Kinsler went to Detroit in exchange for Prince Fielder and $30 million in cash. Needless to say, the trade for Prince Fielder is one of the worst moves made in the history of the Rangers franchise. For the second time in three years, the slugging first baseman is out for the remainder of the season. Fielder will undergo season ending neck surgery for the second time to repair a herniated disc.
During the 2014 season, Fielder was limited to just 42 games, providing a slash line of .247/.360/.360, collecting only 3 home runs and 16 RBI. Fielder was able to put together a full season for the Rangers in 2015 during which he batted .305 while bombing 23 home runs and driving in 98. Unfortunately the Texas Rangers have not received the same production from Fielder as Detroit. In his two seasons wearing the Old English D Fielder hit .295/.387/.491 slugging 55 homers and 214 RBI. Fielder was also a two-time All-Star in Detroit as well as won a Silver Slugger and was a Top 10 MVP vote getting in 2012.
In order to bring Fielder to Detroit, the Rangers chose to trade away one of the franchises best players in second baseman Ian Kinsler. Kinsler has been nothing but spectacular in his time in Detroit. Batting .286/.329/.441 with 48 home runs and 222 RBI, Kinsler was an All-Star in 2014 and has been snubbed each of the last two seasons.
If you take a look at the below stats, the Texas Rangers are likely kicking themselves in the butt for making the move they did.
Overall, the Tigers have benefited from solid seasons in each of the last five years – two from Prince and three from Kinsler. Meanwhile the Rangers only received two solid seasons from Kinsler and on from Prince in the same five-year period.
Looking back at this trade as a Tigers fan, I was ecstatic to see Prince leave. While Prince was productive for the Tigers during the regular season, the 2012 and 2013 post seasons were supposed to be Detroit’s chance to bring home a World Series title. They failed in each attempt, losing in the World Series in 2012 and getting the boot from the Boston Red Sox (4-2) in the 2013 ALCS. Fielder lost the respect of nearly every Tigers fan after the heart breaking ALCS in 2013 when he spoke with the media and stated, “It’s not really tough man. It’s over. I got kids I got to take care of, I got things I got to take care of. It’s over.”
This trade should go to show, anytime a team is willing to give up their “star player” and add in $30 million, the receiving organization should think wisely before striking a deal. Did the Detroit Tigers pull one over on the Texas Rangers? We’ll never know. Is it possible the Tigers knew of a health issue that was not detected in the physical performed by the Rangers doctors? We’ll never know. What we do know is that Detroit struck gold in receiving Ian Kinsler and the Rangers now have one of the most untradeable players in Major League Baseball.