Rangers Trade Kinsler to Tigers for Prince Fielder

CBSSports.com Baseball Insider

The Rangers and Tigers have agreed on a blockbuster deal to send Prince Fielder to Texas for Ian Kinsler, CBSSports.com has learned.

The deal is a one-for-one swap of stars. It is believed the Tigers are sending about $30 million to cover part of the difference in salaries.

Fielder waived his no-trade clause, approving the deal, sources said. He has a limited no-clause provision that includes the Rangers, but didn't balk at the trade to Texas, provided he retains his limited protection going forward. He'll be going to a better hitter's park in a state with no income tax.

There was no late word of any medical question, and the trade has been approved by commissioner Bud Selig. His approval is required for trades where more than $1 million changes hands.

Jon Daniels, Dave Dombrowski and Scott Boras couldn't immediately be reached.

The Rangers made a play for Fielder when he was a free agent a couple years ago before the Tigers signed him for $214 million over nine years. It is believed they were prepared to offer at least six years, and maybe seven, with former team president Nolan Ryan believed to be the one who wanted to limit the deal to six years.

Fielder has $168 million over seven years remaining on his contract, while Kinsler has $62 million for four years. JCBSSports.com first reported the trade agreement, and Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports first reported that $30 million would be changing hands.

Trading Kinsler opens up second base for Jurickson Profar. Texas has been looking for added punch to its lineup with Nelson Cruz a free agent.

The Tigers would free up some money in the trade plus fill their second-base hole created by Omar Infante's free agency.

Detroit could use big prospect Nick Castellanos at third base, and move two-time defending A.L. MVP Miguel Cabrera to first base. That could be a plus for Cabrera, who had switched to third base with Fielder's signing two years ago, given his physical issues in 2013. Even if Castellanos plays the outfield, it's seen as likely Cabrera would move to first now.

The loss of Fielder means a bit less lineup protection for Cabrera, as Fielder has served as lineup protection for three MVPs (including Ryan Braun with Milwaukee). Adrian Beltre could bat in front of Fielder in Texas.

The Tigers had been floating Max Scherzer as a trade possibility. But a deal of Fielder should free up extra cash to try to sign Scherzer, the 2013 Cy Young winner, long-term. The Tigers also will aim to lock up Cabrera this winter, and that will take a lot of money, as well, of course.