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'The Bigs 2': Fielder Covers 'The Bigs'

When Prince Fielder blasts the ball high up into the stands, he might not showboat in the batter's box and wait to watch where it lands, but you can probably guess the first thing he does when he gets home.

"I love watching the highlights," Fielder laughs. "I don't want to show up the pitcher on the field, but I can't wait to see where the ball landed. I try to take a quick look when I start my jog, but most of the time, you never really know where it lands until you see the highlights.

"You have to keep positive thoughts throughout the season, and watching highlights of your own home runs, that will definitely put you in a positive mood. It's good to have those images in your mind."

And it's those long bombs that make Prince Fielder the perfect cover athlete and spokesman for 2K Sports' upcoming game, "The Bigs 2," a franchise that features stylized superstars smashing 500-foot homers and making diving, leaping and even between-the-legs catches look routine.

"You're never going to see me jump on top of the dugout to make a catch in real life," Fielder admits, "but it's nice to know that at least my character can do that stuff in the game and I won't get hurt.

"It's funny because as a kid, I used to always dream of being on the cover of a video game, so for it to actually happen and for it to be a crazy game like this where guys are running up walls to make a catch, it's really cool."

Here's what else Fielder had to say about his game, the Brewers and those nasty curves in "RBI Baseball."


ESPN: Is the payoff to all of your real-life home runs getting to watch your character become a complete badass in the game?

Prince Fielder: I wish I could hit them out as much in real life as I am in this game, that's for sure. Real-life batting is much harder, but when you work hard at something and you find success, it makes all that practice worth it because you get things like this. It's funny, because every time a baseball game comes out, I have to check my power numbers, and I think they actually make me almost too good. They make me even more powerful in these games than I am in real life, but I'm not complaining.

Fielder Every time a baseball game comes out, I have to check my power numbers, and I think they actually make me almost too good. They make me even more powerful in these games than I am in real life, but I'm not complaining.

-- Prince Fielder

ESPN: The only time I ever hit a ball 450 feet is in the video game. What goes through your mind when you smash a long one for real?

Prince Fielder: You don't really feel anything. At least for me, I don't even realize what I've just done until I hit home plate again. It's a great feeling, but you really don't realize it until it's over.

ESPN: Were you always strong as a kid? Were you the guy in the neighborhood who would break a lot of windows with his hits?

Prince Fielder: Swinging bats in the house, I was known for knocking over vases and pretty much everything else. [laughs] I would get in trouble, but at the same time they would look at me like: "This kid is stronger than we thought."

ESPN: What were your favorite baseball games growing up?


Prince Fielder: "RBI," "Ken Griffey" and the old "Nintendo Baseball." That game was so old, I think they just called it "Baseball." I was probably a better gamer back then too, because I would be on those games every day. I know during the season, it's a lot harder to stay up to date with all the games, but I still love to play. The graphics today are amazing.

ESPN: Are you glad you don't have to face those "RBI" curves in real life?

Prince Fielder: So glad. [laughs] That's the only game ever made where it's harder to hit in the game than it is in real life, especially if you were playing against someone who was an expert at bending that curve back in at just the right time.

ESPN: What's your game setup like at home?

Prince Fielder: I have all three systems: Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and the Wii. My kids are really into the Wii right now, so that's what we play the most. We're really into "Mario Kart" and bowling.

ESPN: So if I take the Brewers in "The Bigs 2," what's going to be the key to winning some games?

Prince Fielder: For our team, hit home runs. That's what we're good at, driving the ball.

ESPN: How about in real life? What's the key to you guys making the playoffs this year?

Prince Fielder: We're a team who scores a lot of runs by hitting home runs and getting extra-base hits. If we can keep doing that, I think we'll be all right.

ESPN: Was it tough to watch CC Sabathia leave for the Yankees?

Prince Fielder: Oh yeah, and not just because he is a great player, but because he is a friend as well. He came over and he was an awesome guy from the start.

ESPN: How do you replace someone like that?

Prince Fielder: You can't, you just can't, [shakes head] but he was here long enough to help a lot of the younger guys and give them some of his knowledge so that they can then take their games up to that next level and that's really important to our team as we move forward.

ESPN: "The Bigs 2" has a bunch of pitching legends in the game so you can match up the best players from the past against the best of this generation. Who is a legend you wish you could step up and hit against?

Prince Fielder: Bob Gibson. He might throw me the high heat, but that's all right.

ESPN: Is there a pitcher who you face now who owns you in real life to the point where you want to get back at his character in the game?

Prince Fielder: Roy Oswalt is always tough. But that's the thing, they make him that good in the game too, so I don't know if I'll do any better.

ESPN: Do you ever pause the game and do a close-up of your character to see how he looks?

Prince Fielder: Every now and then. [laughs] He's not a bad-looking guy in the game, but I think I'm still a little better-looking in real life. I don't mind when they boost my ratings in the game, but I'd rather be better-looking in real life. I don't think too many people are checking out my face in the game anyway. All they want to see from me is me hitting home runs. Hopefully now that I'm on the cover, my guy will hit even more than ever.