Prince Fielder, Milwaukee Brewers Avoid Arbitration, Agree to Terms

Ryan DonahueContributor IJanuary 22, 2009

The Brewers are wrapping up talks with first baseman Prince Fielder on a two year, $18 million deal. A detailed account of the Brewers' deal with Fielder will be released within the next 24 hours.  It could be released at "Bob Uecker's Winter Warm-Up," which will be held Friday evening in downtown Milwaukee.

Fielder's contract will cover the first two of three arbitration seasons he is eligible for. The vegetarian slugger must pass a physical before the contract will be enacted.

Last season, Fielder hit .276 with 34 home runs and 102 RBI, which followed his career 2007 season. He had 50 home runs and 119 RBI in 2007.  Barring any injuries, Fielder's 2008 statistical season can be expected from the third-year Brewer.

Recent players offered arbitration-avoiding deals include shortstop J.J. Hardy and pitcher Dave Bush.  Hardy was offered a one year, $4.65 million deal. He hit .283 with 24 home runs during the historic 2008 season.  Bush had a 4.18 ERA in 31 games last season, of which he earned 16 quality starts.

Arbitration-eligible players remaining include pitcher Seth McClung, right fielder Corey Hart, and second baseman Rickie Weeks.