Milwaukee's slugging first baseman Prince Fielder had to fight back the emotions after what may have been his last game as a Brewer on Sunday.
When the impending free agent stepped to the plate in the eighth for his last at-bat of the NLCS, Cardinals first baseman Albert Pujols told his pitcher to hold the ball a little longer and allow the Milwaukee crowd to salute Fielder.
It was awesome, Fielder said, clearing his throat as he spoke to reporters about the standing ovation he received at Miller Park in the series-ending Game Six.
The 27-year-old Fielder, a three-times All Star who this year was second in Major League Baseball with 38 home runs, and whose 120 runs batted in were second most in the National League, has said he doubted the Brewers will pay him the sort of long-term deal he should command.
Fielder said he appreciated his years in Milwaukee.
It was awesome playing here, I'm just glad I was able to have the fun that I had, he said. It was cool. It was cool.
The burly, bearded slugger said it was disappointing to come up short in their bid to reach the World Series but that the wild card Cardinals were deserving winners.
They just played better. They played great baseball, give them the credit. They were hitting, they made the pitches when they had to. They just beat us.
Fielder said he had no regrets about the season the NL Central champion Brewers had.
We had a great year as a team. Unfortunately, we didn't get where we wanted to, but great memories.
As long as I play as hard as I can, I can sleep at night, he said. That's it, time to play with the kids.
First, the big home run hitter had farewells to say.
Got to say goodbye to my team mates because it's the off-season now. I'm not going to be seeing them every day.
I had a couple of 'clear-the-throat moments,' he admitted. I love these guys. I've been playing with most of them since I was 18.