By Shawn Muller-
(CBS) Since the Cubs baseball season has been over and done with since May, there really hasn’t been much to talk about on the North Side these days. Well, I guess we could do what we normally do every off-season and complain about yet another season passing by without a championship, but even that is getting to become such a bore since that is all we ever have the pleasure of talking about anyway.
So, what do we talk about then? Oh, I know!
How about Prince Fielder?
If you didn’t already know, Prince Fielder is in the final year of his contract with the Brewers and the slugger has made it known that this will probably be his last hurrah in the Brew City. In an interview with TBS Wednesday, Fielder said, “I’m signed for this year, but being real about it, it is probably the last year.”
Using my best Ace Ventura voice, all I can say is, “Reeheeheeally”!
It’s not that I am surprised Fielder will probably not be with the Brewers next year. I think it was pretty much a given that he would, in fact, test the free agent market. But to hear him come out and say this is probably his last hurrah with the only team he has ever known—while they are still in action—kind of threw me off a bit.
And I am sure I wasn’t the only one to be thrown off by this.
Twitter accounts all across Cubs nation were probably ablaze with tweets regarding this comment. Cubs fans have been fawning all over the prospect of landing either Prince Fielder or Albert Pujols for next season before the 2011 season even began. We still don’t know if Pujols will test free agency—and quite frankly, I don’t want him—but to hear Fielder come out and say “I’m outta here Milwaukee! Smell you later!” this close to the playoffs?
Why shouldn’t Cubs fans be excited about Fielder potentially playing in Chicago? Let’s face it; this could very well become a reality. The price tag Prince will carry into free agency will price many teams out of the equation from the get go and many of the teams that could afford him don’t really need a first baseman.
The Yankees have Mark Teixeira. The Red Sox have Adrian Gonzalez. The Tigers have Miguel Cabrera. The Phillies have Ryan Howard. The White Sox have Paul Konerko. And the Dodgers and the Mets are broke.
So that basically leaves the Cubs, the Angels and the Giants as the teams with deep enough pockets to compete for his services.
As far as the Angels are concerned, they may already have their first baseman of the future in Mark Trumbo. The rookie slugger has 26 home runs and 82 RBI’s in his first full season in the Majors so, on the surface, it doesn’t look like Fielder is much of a need in Anaheim.
San Francisco is one year removed from winning the World Series and they do have a glaring need at first base with Aubrey Huff, Mark DeRosa, and Brandon Belt splitting time. Huff and DeRosa are aging and Belt’s natural position is in left field, so Fielder could easily slide right in to that Giants lineup, but I don’t see Fielder putting up the type of offensive numbers he is used to putting up in San Francisco if he chose to sign with the Giants.
When it boils down to it, a marriage between Fielder and the Chicago Cubs is a match made in heaven and a no-brainer for both parties. Fielder is a monster at Wrigley Field, the Cubs will have plenty of cash to throw around in free agency, and the Ricketts family needs to make a their first big free agent splash as owners.
It just makes too much sense.
So much sense, that Fielder will probably end up somewhere other than the Windy City next summer.
Shawn Muller has lived in the great city of Chicago for 7 years. He is a 2002 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and, in October of 2010, Shawn received his certificate in radio broadcasting. In his free time, Shawn enjoys spending time with his wife Melissa and 3 year old daughter Ava, catching any live sporting event, and traveling. Check out his radio show, Grab Some Bench with Muller and Bangser” every Thursday night at 8:30 P.M., at www.blogtalkradio.com/spmuller24. Read more of his blogs here.