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Good Day, Sweet Prince

Despite playing with an ailing left thumb, Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks, 22, has hit 13 homers and knocked in 39 runs since being called up on June 10. Recently Weeks was joined in the Show by an old friend.

A FEW WEEKS AGO [Aug. 18] I was reunited with one of my best friends, Prince Fielder, when he was called up from Triple A Nashville. People know who Prince is because of his dad, Cecil, who hit a ton of home runs [six seasons of more than 30] for the Detroit Tigers, a few hundred miles east of here down I-94. A lot of people have been talking about how Prince (right) and I are the future of the franchise in Milwaukee. I try not to pay much attention to talk like that, but the hype is weird--I've known Prince since he was 11, when we were teammates on an AAU baseball team in Orlando. Prince was the first baseman, I was the second baseman, just like we are with the Brewers.

AND JUST LIKE NOW, PRINCE WAS ONE OF THE YOUNGER PLAYERS ON THAT TEAM (he's a year younger than me), and he could rake. He's huge, like his dad. He was the biggest kid on the team, probably more than 200 pounds. On an 11-year-old, that's a sight to see. We got along because we're similar: low-key guys just looking to have a good laugh. After we were drafted by the Brewers--Prince in 2002, me in '03--we became really close as we rose through the minors together. But since Prince has been here, we haven't had much time to hang out. People think life is so glamorous as a pro ballplayer, but other than playing ball, there's not much time for anything else.

THERE HAVE BEEN A LOT OF CALL-UPS since rosters expanded on Sept. 1, and it's fun to have guys up here who were my friends at Nashville: J.J. Hardy, Corey Hart, Jose Cappellan, Kane Davis. One of the most thrilling games of the season for me was last week when me, J.J. and Prince each homered and drove in all the runs in a 6-5 win over Pittsburgh. Prince's was a two-run, ninth-inning walk-off homer. I've been watching him hit big home runs like that forever; hopefully I'll be watching it for years to come here in Milwaukee, too.