ARLINGTON, Texas — Prince Fielder will not be able to come back after a second neck surgery.
The Texas Rangers slugger wept Wednesday as he said health issues were forcing him to end his 12-season major league career. He was still wearing a neck brace 12 days after his second cervical fusion in just over two years.
The 32-year-old Fielder said it’s going to be tough not being able to play again after being around the majors since he was a kid with his father, Cecil, a slugger who played 13 seasons for five different teams. Prince’s two young sons sat with him at the podium, mostly with their heads down and also shedding tears.
All of his Rangers teammates, along with coaches and staff, filled the interview room at their home ballpark to support him.
Fielder was one of the most durable players in the majors when Texas acquired from Detroit after the 2013 season for second baseman Ian Kinsler.
The stout first baseman had played at least 157 games every year since 2006, and appeared in 809 of 810 possible games the previous five seasons before joining the Rangers. But Fielder was limited to 289 games in Texas, including the two season-ending neck surgeries.
Fielder will finish his career with 319 career homers, the same number that his father had playing one more season but 141 fewer games.