January 16, 2012

The Texas Rangers can afford to sign both free-agent Prince Fielder and Japanese import Yu Darvish, according to Jim Bowden of ESPN.com.

[tweet https://twitter.com/JimBowdenESPNxm/status/158608862113570816 align='center']

It was previously believed that the Rangers, who had won the exclusive negotiating rights to Darvish by committing a $51.7 million posting fee, would only sign Prince Fielder if the team failed to reach a deal with the hurler before the Jan. 18 signing deadline. The Rangers would reportedly like to give Darvish a similar deal to the $52 million contract the Boston Red Sox gave Daisuke Matsuzaka in 2007, meaning in total they would be committing roughly over $100 million on Darvish.

Fielder, the top remaining bat on the market, is believed to be demanding a contract with a value near $200 million. The amount of overall interest in Fielder has been brought into question, however, as the Washington Nationals are considered to be one of the only other remaining teams vying for his services. Fielder hit .299/.415/.566 with 38 home runs and 120 RBI in 162 games last year for the Milwaukee Brewers. The 27-year-old has been one of the more consistent players in the majors over the past several seasons. In 998 career games, he has amassed a .282 career batting average, 230 home runs and 656 RBIs.

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