Despite bidding nearly $52 million on Japanese pitcher Yu Darvish, the suddenly big-pocketed Texas Rangers have been repeatedly linked with Milwaukee Brewers first basemen Prince Fielder, the most prominent free agent left, in recent weeks.
In the Dallas Morning News, Gerry Fraley reports that the team "is still lurking" on Fielder, crediting the franchise's new local TV contract with expanding their coffers while noting that the Rangers swooped in at the last minute and signed Adrian Beltre last January.
With the Angels signing Albert Pujols and the Cardinals signing Carlos Beltran, there aren't many viable options for Fielder, who is rumored to want a contract in excess of $150 million, left on the market.
The only remaining marquee franchise who could use a slugging first basemen is the Chicago Cubs, and they are still several years away from contention under new GM Theo Epstein. The Toronto Blue Jays, who just missed out on Darvish, have been discussed as a possible destination as well.
Fielder's agent, Scott Boras, has been one of the most effective negotiators in baseball over the last decade, and it's entirely possible he's playing these negotiations close to the vest.