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Saturday, November 8, 2014

Rangers Injury Update: Prince Fielder activated from 60-day DL

By on 11/08/2014 08:30:00 AM

In an extremely low-radar move, the Texas Rangers have activated first baseman Prince Fielder from the 60-day disabled list and expect him ready to report to Spring Training on time in February. Fielder missed most of the 2014 season because of neck surgery.

NBC Sports RotoWorld reminds us that Fielder had already begun swinging a bat back in September and says he is "on track for Spring Training, barring any setbacks."

In his first season with the Rangers, Fielder played in only 42 games. Neck problems helped lead to his career-low .247 average and keep his power numbers down to 3 HR and 16 RBI. He chose season-ending surgery to repair the herniated discs in his neck by having the C5 and C6 discs fused. He had the surgery performed on May 27.

Be fore 2014, Fielder's career low in games played as a full-time first baseman was 157 in 2006. He played all 162 games in four of the five seasons from 2009-2013 with the Milwaukee Brewers and Detroit Tigers, missing only one game in 2010.

The slugging first baseman has career totals of .285/.388/.522 with 288 HR, 886 RBI, and a 2.3 average WAR. The Tigers traded him and his contract to Texas for second baseman Ian Kinsler during the previous offseason. He played only two of the nine seasons to which the Tigers signed him for a total of $214 million in January of 2012. At age 30, he still has six years and $144 million to go while ending his contract at age 36 in 2020.

Fielder's neck problem was only one of a myriad of injuries that destroyed the Rangers in 2014. On November 7, our own Darius Austin chronicled the Rangers' injuries, breaking them down month by month. Normally a powerhouse, the Rangers finished 2014 in last place in the A.L. West at 67-95, 31 games behind the division-winning Los Angeles Angels. With Fielder and his teammates back in the lineup, the Rangers should improve drastically in 2015.

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