Prince Fielder is never going to play baseball again, yet for the Texas Rangers to recoup insurance payments on his contract, they were required to keep him on their 40-man roster in the off-season.
That roster spot, though, became valuable enough to the Rangers that they released the veteran slugger upon negotiating a settlement with the company insuring the contact. Daniels said that he could not disclose the money the Rangers will receive, but said that the decision wasn’t about finances.
The club is planning to add multiple minor-leaguers to the 40-man roster this off-season rather than risk losing them to the Rule 5 draft. The Rangers are also facing the possibility of adding seven pitchers on major-league deals.
“There’s not really a financial impact,” Daniels said. “In the off-season, there is no 60-day DL. We got to the point where we were comfortable with the circumstances where we effectively were able to get that roster spot back.”
Fielder, who played his final game July 18, 2016, finished his career with a .283 average and 319 home runs. He was forced to retire after a second fusion of two cervical disks. He spent all of last off-season on the 40-man roster but hit the 60-day DL the day spring training opened.
Daniels said that the Rangers will add more minor-leaguers to the 40-man this off-season than normal. Chief among them is catcher Jose Trevino, who has won minor-league Globe Glove awards the past two seasons.