Rangers first baseman Prince Fielder could miss the remainder of the season due to a herniated disk in his neck, MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan reports. Fielder had an MRI on Tuesday and will be examined again on Friday by Dr. Drew Dossett in Dallas to decide on the next step. Fielder’s season will come to close if he moves forward with the surgery.
Fielder’s bat has seen better years. The 32-year old is batting .212 with 63 strikeouts, and only eight home runs in 89 games. The herniation occurs between Fielder’s C4 and C5 vertebrae, just above where he had season ending surgery in 2014.
This injury isn’t the only thing reminiscent of Fielder’s 2014 season. Fielder had a similar slash line, as he batted .247 with a .360 slugging and on base percentage. After having surgery 42 games into 2014, Fielder came back to have a redemptive 2015, posting a .305 batting average, .463 slugging percentage, and a .841 OPS.
Outfielder Shin-Soo Choo has also been placed on the 15-day DL with soreness and inflammation in his lower back.
Both of these injuries come just before the August 1 trade deadline, but they don’t appear to change the club’s deadline strategy. According to Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News, manager Jon Daniels says that the team won’t let these injuries effect their trade deadline strategy. Their focus will remain on pitching in an effort to provide “lineup versatility”. The Rangers have been linked to pitchers Andrew Cashner of the Padres, Yankee closer Aroldis Chapman, and just about anyone in the Tampa Bay rotation. They recently acquired minor league righty Scott Carroll from the White Sox for cash considerations in a depth move.
To fill the gaps the Fielder/Choo injuries have left, the Rangers have called up shortstop Hanser Alberto and outfielder Delino DeShields from Triple-A Round Rock.