Prince Fielder says he is starting to feel good at the plate, which bodes well for the Texas Rangers.
Fielder, one of the prize off-season acquisitions, was off to one of his worst starts in the big leagues going into Tuesday. He had a .176 average with no home runs, three RBIs, a .263 on-base percentage and a .235 slugging percentage in the club’s first 13 games.
Fielder, though, said he isn’t overly concerned about his slow start. And rightfully so as he homered to start the second inning, sending a deep shot to center field off Mariners righty Blake Beavan.
The longest homerless drought for Fielder to start the season is 14 games in 2008 and 2010, years in which he hit 34 and 32 homers respectively.
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Fielder somewhat alluded to his homer before the game when told of those stats, saying: “Means one should be coming soon.”
Fielder had a two-hit night on Monday by dropping in a popup double down the left-field line in the seventh inning, and legging out an infield single. Fielder said he felt it was coming around and expressed little concern about his early-season slump.
“I can’t afford for it to be in my head because I play everyday,” Fielder said. “If it’s in my head still from the day before, I’m no good to my team at all. I just try to go out there everyday and try to help the team win.”
Fielder, 29, also downplayed his struggles being related to joining a new team and trying to impress a new fan base, saying he always wants to perform well. He also said he isn’t going to alter his approach at the plate even though opposing team’s have employed a heavy shift to the right-side with three infielders.
“If I could put a GPS on the bat, I would,” Fielder said, smiling. “But you can’t do that. You can’t go up there trying to manipulate the ball on the left side of the field because that would be taking away from my strength, which is trying to drive the ball.”