Prince Fielder has played in parts of 10 seasons in Major League Baseball and has never spent time on the disabled list. He has been the perfect example of durability playing 162 games in four of his 8 full seasons and no less than 157 in the remaining 4 seasons. On January 26th, 2012 Fielder famously signed a massive $214 Million, 9 year contract with the Detroit Tigers and two years later was part of the blockbuster Ian Kinsler & Fielder trade with the Texas Rangers.
In his first year with the Rangers, Fielder was struggling in 42 games with a .247/.360/.360 line with only 3 HR and 16 RBI. This is significantly off his 162 game average pace of .285/.388/.522 with 34 HR & 105 RBI.
Fielder and the Rangers explored options to keep him off the DL and he received a nerve-root injection which according to the University of Maryland sounds fun, “A nerve root block is an injection of local anesthetic (numbing medicine) and steroid injected under X-ray guidance into the area where the nerve exits the spinal column.” Fielder meet with spine specialist Drew Dosset and it was recommended he have season-ending fusion surgery to repair a herniated disk in his neck which will require a three-four month recovery.
The loss of Fielder for the season is a huge blow for the Rangers who have suffered significant injuries in 2014. Fielder joins Matt Harrison, Martin Perez, Pedro Figueroa, Kevin Kouzmanoff, Jim Adduci, Tanner Scheppers, Joe Saunders, Geovany Soto, Engel Beltre, Jurickson Profar, Derek Holland and Joe Ortiz on the extensive Texas Rangers DL. The long line of injuries has put the 23-25 Rangers in 4th place in the NL West. If they continue to fall out of contention they might look to move some of their valuable pieces and focus on rebuilding towards a healthy 2015. In the meantime they will face tough competition from their division rivals as they try to nurse the team back to health and competitiveness.