Matt Holliday, Cardinals Could Agree This Week

10:06pm: Cardinals' manager Tony La Russa says that any deal should be finalized this week, according to Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The piece offers plenty of detail about this past weekend's negotiations, which have left the Cardinals with "a sense of optimism" regarding Holliday.

5:30pm: Sources tell ESPN.com's Buster Olney that the Cardinals and Holliday "are close to a deal."

12:35pm: It's been suggested that the Cardinals have offered multiple contract scenarios to Holliday.  One might have been seven years and $112MM, according to SI's Jon Heyman.  Also, Heyman talked to one source who believes the Orioles are "laying in the weeds" despite recent denials.

Meanwhile, Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch offers his take, in which he notes that silence from Cards GM John Mozeliak might be a positive sign.

8:30am: A Friday tweet by Cardinals manager Tony La Russa had some fans wondering if a Matt Holliday signing was imminent, but Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch contacted La Russa to get an explanation exceeding 140 characters.  La Russa explained to Goold:

"We're getting ready to move.  I know they’ve been talking a lot with Matt. I know we have a really smart Plan B…(It) could be on Plan A, or it could be our Plan B. The point is, we're not going to get stuck."

La Russa told Goold he was not referring specifically to Holliday with his "Soon the Cards will be smart too" tweet.  However, Goold did learn from one source that there could be a Holliday resolution this week.  Goold speculated that of the various packages offered to the slugger, six or seven years with a guarantee over $100MM might do the trick.  Tracy Ringolsby of FOX Sports suggested on Wednesday that Holliday aims to top the $18MM average annual salary he passed up from the Rockies in '08.  It will be interesting to see how high the Cardinals are willing to go given the lack of a clear second suitor for Holliday.


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