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Texas Rangers' Prince Fielder might need neck surgery

By The Sports Xchange
Texas Rangers' Prince Fielder might need neck surgery
Texas Rangers' Prince Fielder tries to run out a ball hit on the ground in the second inning at Busch Stadium in St. Louis on June 17, 2016. Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Prince Fielder might be headed for season-ending neck surgery for the second time in his three years with the Texas Rangers.

The first baseman/designated hitter was placed on the 15-day disabled list Wednesday because of a herniated disk in his neck, and he would miss the rest of the season if he decides to have surgery.

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The 32-year-old slugger had an MRI exam Tuesday that revealed the herniation. Surgery was recommended, but Fielder will seek a second opinion later this week.

Fielder played in only 42 games in 2014 because of a herniated disk that was one vertebra below where the herniation is this time. He has been bothered by his neck for a while now but didn't tell the Rangers until Monday.

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In 89 games this year, Fielder is batting .212 with a .292 on-base percentage, a .334 slugging percentage, eight homers and 44 RBIs.

Fielder wasn't the only Rangers regular who ended up on the disabled list Wednesday. Outfielder Shin-Soo Choo joined him on the shelf because of an inflamed lower back.

Choo had an anti-inflammatory injection and is expected to be able to rejoin the roster when he is eligible to return on Aug. 4. Choo had started just one of the Rangers' first five games since the All-Star break because of his back.

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Texas filled the roster spots by calling up outfielder Delino DeShields and infielder Hanser Alberto from Triple-A Round Rock.

DeShields, who hit .217 with a .294 on-base percentage in 30 games for the Rangers earlier this season, was hitting .261 with a .367 OBP for Round Rock. He is expected to come off the bench and get an occasional start in the outfield. DeShields appeared as a pinch runner Wednesday night.

Alberto played in 24 games for Texas earlier this season, hitting just .162 (6-for-37) with no extra-base hits. Alberto, who was hitting .250 with four homers and 16 RBIs in 39 games for Round Rock, can play the middle infield and third base.

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