Baseball: Neck injury forces Fielder into retirement - Metro US

Baseball: Neck injury forces Fielder into retirement

(Reuters) – Texas Rangers power-hitter Prince Fielder bid an emotional goodbye to baseball on Wednesday due to neck ailments.

Wearing a neck brace and joined by his two young sons and Rangers team mates, the six-time All Star Fielder said his body would no longer allow him to play.

Fielder, 32, recently underwent his second neck surgery in a span of just over 26 months. He was suffering from a herniated disk and underwent a cervical fusion.

He was placed on the 60-day disabled list on July 20 and two doctors recommended that the Texas designated-hitter should have surgery and not play again.

“This is actually the most fun I’ve ever had and best I ever felt mentally about baseball,” Fielder told reporters.

“That’s the thing that really hurts. My brain was good. My body, it just gave out.”

After being traded to the Texas Rangers before the 2014 season, Fielder’s campaign was cut short because of a season-ending neck surgery.

He returned in 2015 and captured the American League Comeback Player of the Year Award after batting .305 with 23 home runs and 98 RBIs.

But the physical struggles returned for Fielder this season and he was hitting just .212. Fielder ended his career with a .283 batting average and 319 home runs, having played for the Milwaukee Brewers, Detroit Tigers and Rangers.

(Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; editing by Sudipto Ganguly)

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