Prince Fielder’s Power Outage

by Collin Budd | Posted on Monday, April 13th, 2015
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Jim Rogash/ Getty Images

Jim Rogash/ Getty Images

A week into the young season and it appears that we do not know any more about the 2015 Texas Rangers than we did prior to Opening Day. It will take more than just a week of game play to determine if the current rotation is strong enough to keep the team afloat in the standings before Derek Holland can rejoin the rotation or if the combination of Jake Smolinski and Ryan Rua can add a quality major league bat to the Rangers lineup. While these stories play out all season, one thing to keep an eye on is the disappearance of Prince Fielder’s home run swing.

Through Texas’ first seven games, Fielder has been one of the club’s hottest bat, collecting 11 hits through his first 29 at-bats entering play on Monday. This is an encouraging sign for Fielder who missed most of 2014 due to injury but Texas did not acquire the 30-year-old to hit singles  but rather to launch balls into the home run porch in right field. It should be noted for a handful of his at bat this season, Fielder wasn’t looking to drive the pitch but rather beat a defensive shift by spraying the ball to the left side of the infield. However, looking back to Spring Training, his numbers indicate a different story.

Since Texas’ first exhibition game this year Fielder has tallied only a single home run in 73 at bats split between Spring Training and the regular season which is a significant drop from his career average of a home run per every 17 at bats. Alone, this number may not be too alarming but also take note that Fielder has only been able to collect four extra base hits during the same time span.

It is still early in the season and the small sample size can be a bit misleading at times, however this is an interesting story line to follow as the season progresses. Maybe Fielder is still knocking off some of the rust from missing most of last year but a great deal of the offense will hinge on Fielder’s ability (or inability) to drive the ball this summer.

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Collin Budd
About the Author

Freelance writer covering the MLB since 2011. Senior Writer for Baseball Hot Corner. Lover of all things except spiders and those who believe a hot dog is not a sandwich.

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