Brewers GM: “We’re not shopping Prince Fielder”

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With one season remaining on Prince Fielder’s contract the assumption has been that the Brewers will look to trade him this offseason, but general manager Doug Melvin told Bob Nightengale of USA Today that “we’re not shopping Prince” and “I’d like to keep him.”

Of course, regarding a new contract Melvin also said that the Brewers “would like to get something done by the end of the offseason” and “don’t want to negotiate during the year.”

In other words, the “we’re not shopping Prince” thing may not change much at all, because the odds of Fielder and the Brewers agreeing to a new long-term deal before Opening Day seem pretty slim to say the least.

Fielder’s agent, Scott Boras, typically pushes his big-name clients to test the open market and it’s unclear if the Brewers are even interested in committing $100 million or more to keep Fielder long term anyway. Much like the Padres with Adrian Gonzalez, the Brewers figure to begin “shopping” Prince Fielder at some point.

Mike Trout has a torn thumb ligament, could require surgery

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Yesterday Mike Trout left the Marlins-Angels game after hurting his thumb while sliding head first into second base. After the game the Angels talked about it as if it were just a sprain. Trout had an MRI today, however, and the diagnosis is far worse: he has a torn thumb ligament.

While a treatment option has not yet been chosen, surgery is a possibility. A certainty is that he’ll miss, at the very least, several weeks of play. He has been placed on the disabled list for the first time in his career.

Trout, the reigning AL MVP and, without question, the best player in baseball, is batting .337/.461/.742 with 16 home runs, 36 RBI, 36 runs scored, and 10 stolen bases in 206 plate appearances this season. Even with the one of the weaker supporting casts in baseball, Trout had the Angels near .500 and in at least arguable contention in the AL West.

Without him, they are likely sunk. Without him, baseball is worse off.

Basebrawl! Harper, Strickland punch away, Nats-Giants fight

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SAN FRANCISCO — Nationals slugger Bryce Harper and San Francisco reliever Hunter Strickland both landed punches to the head during a wild brawl that erupted Monday after a hit by pitch.

Harper was hit in the right hip by Strickland’s 98 mph fastball in the eighth inning with Washington ahead 2-0.

Harper pointed the bat toward Strickland, charged the mound and fired his batting helmet wide of the pitcher. They started to swing away and they each connected as the benches and bullpens emptied.

At least two Giants players forcefully dragged Strickland from the middle of the brawl all the way into the dugout. Harper and Strickland were both ejected.

In the 2014 NL Division Series, Harper hit two home runs off Strickland. After the star’s second shot, in Game 4, he stared at Strickland as he rounded the bases.