Cards & Pujols Enter Crunch Time on Contract

Brad Choat

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – The St. Louis Cardinals general manager confirms to KMOX that Wednesday is the likely day the team will publicly address the status of contract negotations with Albert Pujols — if a deal isn’t finalized by then.

John Mozeliak says Pujols and his agent are the ones who said talks would break off once the slugger reports to Spring Training this week, “It’s not our deadline and we’re trying to be respectful of the process. If that ends up being when we decide we’ll wrap things up, then yeah—I think if we don’t have a deal, there’s no reason to prolong things (a blackout on discussing negotiations).”

Mozeliak was Ron Jacober’s guest on his “Sports on a Sunday Morning” show.

Pujols is set to become a free agent at the end of the 2011 season, if no extension is reached.

Jacober asked Mozeliak if there’s any merit to outfielder Matt Holliday offering to defer some of his salary to help the team sign Pujols. Mozeliak said, “I did hear about it. I have not been contacted by him. I don’t know how relevant that is in terms of what we’re trying to accomplish. But, I guess it’s a nice thing to say.”

Cardinals pitchers and catchers begin Spring Training workouts on Monday.

Position players report later.

Copyright KMOX Radio

  • Mike

    I can see merit on both sides of this issue: based on Albert’s statistics and
    accomplishments (steroid free) on the field, and his commitment to community
    and character off the field, he deserves to be compensated accordinly.

    On the other hand–how much Albert earns, will likely become the new “bench
    mark” for all players, and future compensation negotiations; the question
    becomes, “how much is too much?”; or, is baseball ownership financially well
    off, to the point that there IS no ‘ceiling’ for compensation?

    As a Cardinals fan, I hope that the Cards can re-sign Albert; as a guy thankful
    to be working, who has family that has experienced the reality of looking for
    gainful employment in a currently struggling economy, it saddens me that
    the emphasis (obsession?) on more dollars seems to increasingly win out over
    common “cents”, (pardon the pun).

    The other factor, is “what is the story, behind the story”–i.e. the factors and
    influences that figure in to these negotiations, that we, as Joe Fan, will likely
    never be privy to, from both sides.

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