By Loafer Droguett
Prince Fielder is a winner. He’s the youngest person ever to hit 50 home runs in an MLB season. He’s been to five All Star games, and has won three Silver Sluggers and a Hank Aaron award. He has two kids. He earns 24 million United States Dollars every year on his current contract. And he is on a cover of the upcoming ESPN Body Issue.
Prince Fielder (his current slump notwithstanding) is massively successful, which is why it makes absolutely no sense that he is getting a barrage of heat for his nude photo on the cover of the Body Issue. Some might say Prince carries a few more pounds than most elite athletes and doesn’t personify the ideal image we have of the male body, but the concept that he doesn’t take care of himself or that he isn’t someone to put on ESPN’s Body Issue cover is appalling.
Two thirds of Americans are overweight or obese so as defined by…If there’s an athlete who even begins to look like most Americans, it would be Prince Fielder. If anything, he should be the hero of the Body Issue. His presence is evidence that anyone, with any body type, can become an All-Star. He’s a grassroots beast, a superstar who breaks the mold of Adonis bodied athletes. He shows that sports is one of the few places that pure production and effectiveness outweighs looking the part.
Perhaps the hate occurs because the average man sees the Body Issue as an artsy athletic Playboy, and the thought that a man who kinda looks like him could grace the pages of a publication with these angels is repulsive.
However, if this is true, then Prince shouldn’t be singled out from the other men, and it still doesn’t excuse people from the general hate they lump on Fielder. It just doesn’t make sense. Fielder should be an absolute hero for what he’s accomplished in spite of his weight problems. Why worship an athlete like LeBron James, who has a body type and athletic ability I will never have, when I can idolize someone like Prince Fielder, or Steve Nash, or Drew Brees, who made it in spite of their physical shortcomings? It’s commonly said that Americans like to root for the underdog, but when it comes to individuals in sports, we root for people we could never be. I will never be 6’8”, never have a 40” vertical, and never run a 4.4 40. It’s like rooting for Watson in a game of Jeopardy, seeing as he was built to win. You can keep your freakish athletes that make it on talent alone, I prefer to root for those that didn't have all the advantages, like Prince Fielder. That's what makes him the sexiest man alive.