Enrique Rojas’s April 20th article on Miguel Cabrera slipped under my radar, but he snagged some interesting quotes from one of the game’s best players.
Cabrera mentioned that if he was traded, he’d prefer to play with Albert Pujols on the Cardinals. Now there’s a 1-2 punch to be reckoned with. That’s Ruth-Gehrig-esque. Cabrera also said he wouldn’t like to play for the Yankees because of the rules. Additionally, he wants to remain at third base and continue to improve his defense.
Cabrera won’t become a free agent until after the 2009 season. His salary jumped from $472K in 2006 to $7.4MM after beating the Marlins in arbitration and setting a new first-year arb record. If he and the Marlins go to arbitration again after this season, he’ll probably set another record by topping $10MM. $12-13MM seems an appropriate reward. Pujols made $14MM in his fifth season in ’06.
Cabrera is already taking up 24% of Florida’s payroll; it could reach 40% in 2008. The trade bounty could be otherworldly; Hanley Ramirez/Anibal Sanchez could pale in comparison. I don’t think the Cards have the players for a trade.