Blog Entry

Cardinals continue with company in Pujols talks

Posted on: December 8, 2011 1:53 am
 
DALLAS -- The skies seemed to clear ever so briefly for the Cardinals on Wednesday when they learned that the Marlins were out of the Albert Pujols talks. Then the Los Angeles Angels jumped in, according to sources, and the fog has moved back in.

Also in the mix are an unidentified team that reportedly has offered 10 years and more than $200 million, and a Chicago Cubs' offer believed to be shorter term -- four or five years.

It is not clear when Pujols will make a decision. But multiple sources familiar with the talks said the Angels, rumored to have been involved with Pujols 24 hours earlier when they really were not in the mix, entered the bidding aggressively and seriously Wednesday.

Question is, for how long? The Angels also were working feverishly Wednesday night to wrap up a deal with free agent starting pitcher C.J. Wilson. If they come to terms with the left-hander, that almost certainly will preclude them from being able to add Pujols as well.

The agent for Pujols, Dan Lozano, could not be reached for comment. USA Today's Bob Nightengale reported that the Angels made what is believed to be 10-year offer worth at least $210 million. On Tuesday, the Cardinals came in strong with their first new offer since last February, reportedly 10 years at $220 million.

Rookie Angels general manager Jerry Dipoto was evasive earlier Wednesday afternoon when asked directly about Pujols, saying "We're trying to improve our club in a variety of different ways. Speculation is what speculation is. Our net is spread wide, but that's not necessarily where our focus is."

Dipoto said the Angels would like to add a starting pitcher, bullpen depth and a bat that would make the Angels deeper and more versatile.

While deep in talks with Wilson on Wednesday night, the Angels added free agent setup man LaTroy Hawkins on Wednesday night, agreeing to a one-year deal worth $3 million.

Meantime, sources said, the Angels had the pedal to the metal with Wilson and were hard after Pujols.

"We'll continue to have parallel talks, and that's not solely limited to a starting pitcher," Dipoto said earlier in the day. "You have to have the ability to break off and move in a different direction."

The entry of the Angels and an unidentified club into the Pujols sweepstakes had to add to the Cardinals' frustration over not being able to close this deal.

Talks between the Pujols Camp and the Marlins ended sometime around midday Wednesday, which sent the Marlins successfully recruiting in the direction of free agent starter Mark Buehrle. It was around that time that it became publicly clear that the Marlins were out on Pujols, and maybe the Cardinals thought they were home free.

You would think maybe they should be. As the Prince Fielder negotiations proceed slowly, agent Scott Boras held an informal media briefing late Wednesday night in which he dismissed the idea that the Pujols negotiations in any way would affect what he is doing with Fielder.

"The reasons St. Louis are interested in Albert are unique to Albert Pujols," Boras said. "He's dynamic, he has a history there, he's a franchise player, he's a great player ... he's the kind of player [of which] you should probably build a statue while he's playing. He's that kind of guy. He's a really unique player."

Clearly looking to plant seeds for Fielder as well while paying tribute to Pujols, Boras argued that retaining franchise players such as these two first basemen provides value to a club beyond what the player himself does.

"Certainly, the retention of players, I know Matt Holliday came to St. Louis and stayed in St. Louis because Albert Pujols was there," Boras said. "And I know another client of mine, Kyle Lohse, a big reason he wanted to win and go to St. Louis is because Albert Pujols was there.

"So those are two great examples of my clients who were attracted to and stayed in St. Louis because of an iconic player."

In his first foray into free agency, the question remains whether that iconic player will stay in place or move to greener pastures -- or, at least, pastures filled with more greenbacks.
Comments

Since: Oct 5, 2011
Posted on: December 8, 2011 10:08 am
 

Cardinals continue with company in Pujols talks

Hows Kolb treatin you??



Since: Jun 6, 2008
Posted on: December 8, 2011 10:05 am
 

Cardinals continue with company in Pujols talks

The new Marlins ballpark is NOT centrally located.  It is in the middle of Little Havana and fans will be parking in people's front yards as it was with the Orange Bowl.  ($40 - No blockie parky)  Not to mention the utter traffic mess on a nightly basis.  Joe Robbie/Pro Player/Dolphin Stadium is PERFECTLY located, but it just sucks as a baseball park. Doesn't matter who the Marlins get and for how long--once the NOVELTY of the new stadium (and possibly winning) wears off in 2-3 years, they will be 'packing in' only 10,000 a game maybe.  Miami is an EVENTS driven town.  Just ask the Heat.  Once the novelty wore off mid season last year, there was no problem getting tickets.



Since: Oct 5, 2011
Posted on: December 8, 2011 10:05 am
 

Cardinals continue with company in Pujols talks

Yet you have a Kansas City Royals logo as your pic....which is it?



Since: Apr 26, 2009
Posted on: December 8, 2011 10:00 am
 

Cardinals continue with company in Pujols talks

Do any of these clubs truly believe The Big Pu is going to be contributing at age 42?  Perhaps San Fran should jump in on the bidding and he could be tutored by Big Head Barry (that is if he isn't already a disciple, God forbid....). 



Since: Oct 23, 2006
Posted on: December 8, 2011 9:51 am
 

Cardinals continue with company in Pujols talks

Albert turns 32 in January, right now he has may 3 years left of peak production before the decline starts and the minor injuries set in.  In fact the injuries have already started.

Why on earth would any team want to be locked in for 10 seasons given Alberts age?   If Albert was 28-27 it would still be risky but the reward would be much higher.



Since: Apr 15, 2008
Posted on: December 8, 2011 9:39 am
 

Cardinals continue with company in Pujols talks

Even the Cards fans won't forgive him if he goes to the Cubs.......but he's definately going somewhere.........and it's not the Doyers either.



Since: Dec 23, 2010
Posted on: December 8, 2011 9:26 am
 

Cardinals continue with company in Pujols talks

Buherlre is gone and this continues. Pujols needs to pick. If he goes we will have no options for Free Agents with over 200 Million Saved. This is unreal. How much does he want? We are all in the Dark. We need to sign him this week or let him go...We need Upgrades. If Pujols stays I hope Craig going to be the starting 2B and not the Bench



Since: Dec 23, 2010
Posted on: December 8, 2011 9:25 am
 

Cardinals continue with company in Pujols talks

Buherlre is gone and this continues. Pujols needs to pick. If he goes we will have no options for Free Agents with over 200 Million Saved. This is unreal. How much does he want? We are all in the Dark. We need to sign him this week or let him go...We need Upgrades. If Pujols stays I hope Craig going to be the starting 2B and not the Bench



Since: Nov 27, 2011
Posted on: December 8, 2011 9:22 am
 

Cardinals continue with company in Pujols talks

I agree with most in saying what the big deal is here. The ONLY viable club worth Pujols' time would have been the Marlins because of the influence he would have had on the Latin community. There's no question what the Marlins management is trying to accomplish in restructuring their franchise by bringing in Latin players and managers. Plus the new stadium is centrally located in an easier location than the current graveyard they played in. Out here in L.A. yes we have a strong Latin community but we really don't need Pujols' contract or bat. We need pitching in both rotation and bullpen. A couple of decent position players a little time for Trout to get his feet wet. Besides, its of my opinion that the ONLY club who SHOULD pay Pujols ridiculous money is St. Louis because of what Pujols has meant to the franchise. I think its a shame that other clubs offer up ridiculous contracts to players that have performed for other clubs then bomb over the duration of their new deal...see Zito, and any of the Dodgers in the late 90's (Kevin Brown the most notorious).




Since: Jul 27, 2011
Posted on: December 8, 2011 9:21 am
 

Cardinals continue with company in Pujols talks

In any industry, including yours and mine, there is a going rate. And every employee should be entitled to get what they are due when comparing their skills, experience, contribution etc. to this going rate. As such, Pujols is perfectly entitled to look at recent deals and claim at least $25m per year, possibly reduced a little given the current Economy.


However, there is another aspect to this which needs a baseball (sports!) - wide solution.


In the business world, there has been a growing push for performance-related pay to be a major chunk of total remuneration. Well, why not sports stars as well?


Set a maximum salary per year, and pay an excess based on agreed stats.


The locker-room presence and other intangibles would be built into salary, with a significant bonus based on winning the pennant, winning each game. as well as personal stats. In fact, there could easily be a league-wide standard pay system. Rich clubs would still be able to have an advantage (in promising more fixed max salaries) but all clubs would be required to pay a percentage of expected bonuses into a pre-season pot, to avoid over-promising and under-paying.


Margin calls anyone?        
;     &nbs
p;


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