Prince Fielder, MLB All-Star Sadly Forced Into Retirement, Launches His Own Cooking Show

Bryan Brandom
(Photo: Getty Images)

What does one do with $106 million and nothing to do?

If you're former MLB All-Star first baseman Prince Fielder, you create your own cooking show with an appropriate pun for a title: Fielder's Choice.

In August, the 32-year-old tearfully announced an early retirement from baseball after undergoing a second spinal fusion surgery that rendered him unable to play any longer.

"I can't explain it," the former star of the Milwaukee Brewers, Detroit Tigers, and Texas Rangers said during the press conference. "When I did the test at the doctor's office, he asked me to walk a straight line, and I couldn't do it. I did it, but it was too much brain involved to walk a straight line."

But according to ESPN's Jerry Crasnick, Fielder, the son of fellow former All-Star Cecil Fielder, is "surprisingly upbeat" six months after his playing career was cut short.

Fielder is traveling—his family visited Thailand, Vietnam, and Cambodia over the holidays—and driving his 12- and 10-year-old sons, Jadyn and Haven, to and from baseball and basketball practices.

"I'm just living a normal life—a regular life, as people would call it. I'm enjoying it," he said. "I'm still working out. It keeps me feeling good about things. I get to kind of pretend I'm going to play baseball. I get to work out and do all the stuff that was part of baseball. I just don't get to play."

Fielder's love of food has never been much of a secret, as this Tigers fan learned the hard way.

A big fan of cooking shows Diners, Drive-ins and Dives and Action Bronson's F**k That's Delicious, hosting his own food-related show was a dream of Fielder's even before his baseball career ended early.

"A friend of mine asked me a question at the end of 2015," Fielder said. "We were going over my finances and setting things up for the future when she said, 'What do you want to do when you retire?' I said, 'I always wanted to do a food show.' I thought it might be a cool thing to do when I retired a few years later. Then retirement came slightly prematurely."

Fielder will co-host the show with his wife, and it will feature celebrity guests like actor Chazz Palminteri, rapper Xzibit, and pitcher CC Sabathia. It's expected to drop in March and stream on Netflix and Hulu.

"It's not just baseball people. It's a mixture of baseball people, actors, musicians, chefs and whatnot. They bring out different dishes, and at the end of the show, I give the one I like the most the 'Fielder's choice.' It's good TV."

At the time of Fielder's retirement, he still had $106 million remaining on his $214 million contract. That's the most an MLB player has been guaranteed post-retirement, shattering Johan Santana's previous mark of $37.3 million.

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