While some of the athletes in this year's Body Issue might fit the stereotypical view of who we like to see nude — head over to Puck Daddy for Hilary Knight of the U.S. women's hockey team — Fielder was certainly one of the most talked-about appearances because of his 275-pound frame. Also posing tastefully nude: tennis player Venus Williams, swimmer Michael Phelps, NFL running back Marshawn Lynch, Olympic snowboarder Jamie Anderson, among others. Head to ESPN.com for lots more pics.
This annual appreciation of the athletic form (as ESPN promotes it) makes an effort to show different body types, whether it's 77-year-old golfer Gary Player or an eight-months pregnant Kerri Walsh Jennings. Fielder is, of course, one of the largest MLB players and now that his nude photos are out, you'll find no shortage of people calling him fat. But if you're being honest about it, you have to admit, he looks better than expected.
Fielder shouldn't have to defend himself from people on the Internet calling him names — he's a pro athlete after all, employed by a professional sports team for $24 million annually until 2020. That should prove he's athletic enough. But Prince did talk about his body type and what people might think of him, telling ESPN:
A lot of people probably think I'm not athletic or don't even try to work out or whatever, but I do. Just because you're big doesn't mean you can't be an athlete. And just because you work out doesn't mean you're going to have a 12-pack. I work out to make sure I can do my job to the best of my ability. Other than that, I'm not going up there trying to be a fitness model.
As we said when it was announced that Fielder would be stripping down for ESPN The Magazine, The Stew applauds his self-confidence.
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