New Texas Rangers first baseman Prince Fielder was introduced to the Arlington-area media Monday, and his switch from the Detroit Tigers to the Rangers is coming with one more change — a new number.
Fielder will wear No. 84 now, as in 1984, the year he was born. He had worn 28 his entire career before this, both with the Tigers and the Milwaukee Brewers. Now he's going to have to change his Twitter handle too. That's @RealPFielder28.
In Texas, relief pitcher Joakim Soria wears No. 28. Surely Prince could have made a deal to get the number had he really wanted it — dude has some cash, ya know — but he didn't.
Cathartic move by Prince? Shedding the old number and the past that came along with it to start anew? Eh, not so much, Fielder said, according to ESPN's Richard Durrett:
"I just wanted a new number," Fielder said. "It’s just fresh. I think it works. That’s as deep as I’m going."
The only "deep" Rangers fans really care about is home runs hit deep into the outfield stands. If Fielder hits enough of those, Rangers fans will be wearing his jerseys and shirseys all over town, no matter what number is on it. The Rangers are hoping fans don't wait until opening day — sales of the new Fielder jerseys start Monday.
The 2014 Rangers jerseys do have a change, we learned during Prince's introduction. As Paul Lukas from Uni Watch notes:
Rangers manager Ron Washington also announced that Fielder would be hitting third. Yay for November lineup declarations.
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