Video: Prince Fielder hits his 300th career home run

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Rangers DH Prince Fielder slugged the 300th home run of his career on Friday night against Blue Jays starter Mark Buehrle, a towering shot to left field that gave his club a short-lived 1-0 lead.

Fielder, 31, struggled last season — his first with the Rangers — before undergoing neck surgery at the end of May. He has rebounded in a big way this season, entering play Friday with a .344/.413/.525 triple-slash line. The first-inning home run he hit is his 12th of the season.

As Baseball Tonight pointed out on Twitter, Prince and his father Cecil are the second father-son duo to each hi 300-plus home runs, joining Bobby and Barry Bonds.

Major League Baseball to launch an elite league for high schoolers

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This morning Major League Baseball announced a new elite league for high school baseball players who are likely to be drafted. It’s called the Prospect Development Pipeline League. It’ll start next summer and it’ll invite 80 of the best current high school juniors to play in a league in Florida from June through early July, culminating in an All-Star Game during MLB’s All-Star week.

The idea behind the league: to combat the current system in which a couple of pay-to-play, for-profit showcase leagues dominate the pre-draft season. Major League Baseball, schools and a lot of players’ parents have criticized this system because it favors rich kids who can afford to play in them. Major League Baseball is also likely quite keen on having greater control over the training, health and physical monitoring of prospects.

As Jeff Passan notes in his report about this, there will be a component of the program which involves live data-tracking of players during games and drills. Major League Baseball has become increasingly interested in such things but is limited in how much it can do in this regard due to labor agreements. There is no such impediment with high schoolers. Your mileage will vary when it comes to how you feel about that, I presume.