Fielder, Rangers in preliminary talks

ARLINGTON, Texas — Texas Rangers president Nolan Ryan said Saturday that the club’s talks with free-agent first baseman Prince Fielder on Friday were preliminary.

Ryan, who participated in a question-and-answer session as part of FanFest, said the Rangers wanted to see where Fielder was in the process.

“Our mindset is we’re constantly trying to improve the ballclub,” Ryan said. “We look at any opportunity to do that. We met with Prince yesterday and his agent Scott Boras to try and get a true feel for where they are at this point in time in his free agency to try and see if there might be something there that works for the Texas Rangers.”

Ryan said it was too early to tell if anything will come from the meeting.

Ryan reiterated that the club was still confident it would be able to get a deal done with Yu Darvish before the Wednesday deadline.

That move will bolster the starting rotation.

“Obviously we haven’t been able to sign Yu Darvish yet,” Ryan said. “If we are able to sign him, which I feel like we will be able to get that done, but I don’t know that for a fact, he will be a big part of our rotation. If we’re able to sign him, that brings us into spring training with six people competing for five spots. That’s always good.”

One of the staples of FanFest the last couple of years has been Ryan’s win-total prediction for the club for the upcoming season. He said Saturday he couldn’t do that because of the uncertainty surrounding the roster.

“It’s too early to make a prediction,” he said.