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Fielder note 5/26

May 26, 2010

Fielder showing patience at the plate

MILWAUKEE — Prince Fielder has been more selective at the plate recently, which has helped the Brewers’ first baseman raise his on-base percentage 34 points from .367 to .401 over the past three games.

Entering Wednesday’s game, Fielder had walked eight times — including four in one game against the Twins — in the Brewers’ past three games and 15 times in the month of May.

Though his power numbers remain down from this point a year ago, Fielder’s patience may be an indicator that power is on its way.

“If you continue to swing at balls out of the strike zone, you may get hits here and there, but you’re not going to do what you’re capable of doing,” manager Ken Macha said. “Enlarge the strike zone and your production goes down and the amount of runs that the team scores goes down, because you’re not going to score unless you get guys on base.”

On the season, Fielder has a team-leading 27 walks. The eight he has drawn over the past three games represents about 30 percent of his total for the year. With 27 walks, Fielder ranks 10th in the National League and is just six behind the leader.

Fielder walked three times on Tuesday night, including one that extended a four-run seventh inning. Though he remains just fourth and fifth on the team in home runs and RBIs, respectively, Macha likes the direction in which his first baseman is heading.

“I’m very encouraged by what Prince is doing,” Macha said. “His patience is improving. He’s going to start making them get it in the strike zone, and I think it’s going to be very beneficial for him.”

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