Cards Notes: Pujols, Penny, Punto, Eckstein

In a chat with fans today, Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch dished out some information about the Cardinals' remaining offseason wants, some free agent rumors and the Albert Pujols extension talks.  Here are some of the highlights…

  • Strauss thinks it's "feasible" that Pujols could agree to an extension that doesn't stretch over as many years (maybe a five- or six-year deal) but pays him the highest average annual salary in baseball history.  This way Pujols gets his big payout, but it doesn't leave St. Louis on the hook for a huge salary in the seventh or eighth year of a longer contract.
  • The Cardinals are looking for some infield depth at shortstop and third base, plus another starter to provide rotation depth.  They're looking for players with Major League experience to fill these roles, but on non-guaranteed contracts.
  • There is "little enthusiasm" for bringing back Brad Penny.  Strauss isn't sure Penny would be content with serving as an emergency starter out of the bullpen.
  • If the Cards sign a backup infielder, it will have to be an infielder who is "adroit" at third base in case David Freese can't handle the everyday job.  This seems to rule out a return to St. Louis for David Eckstein, but Strauss says Nick Punto "is a popular name within some quarters of the organization."  We haven't heard much about Punto since the Winter Meetings, where the former Twins infielder engaged in "meaningful negotiations" with Cleveland.
  • The Cardinals believe Mitchell Boggs and/or Jason Motte can develop into a solid closer, so there isn't much interest in Rafael Soriano.


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30 Comments on "Cards Notes: Pujols, Penny, Punto, Eckstein"


Ferrariman
4 years 7 months ago

and this is why all of the major reporting and STL post dispatch work is done by Derrik Goold and not Strauss….

mattevilspawn
4 years 7 months ago

Ditto that, Ferrariman. I’m not a Strauss fan either. Prefer Goold or the Commish.

Craig Cutler
4 years 7 months ago

Leach is pretty good as well.

4 years 7 months ago

Pujols should be the highest paid player in the league. All of the salaries have gotten out of hand but Pujols deserves it. He has been the best player in the league since he has come into the league on and off the field. He is one player that every team would love to have

mattevilspawn
4 years 7 months ago

Punto for cheap would be a good sign. His glove and favorable UZR soften the blow of losing Boog.

bdp7150
4 years 7 months ago

cards aren’t gona spend big money now we need backup on ss, 3rd ,punto no big bat but is a switch hitter if we can get for go price grab it what else name would fitt?

syphercx
4 years 7 months ago

Also not a Strauss fan, he is always negative. Not my cup of tea.

bjsguess
4 years 7 months ago

If Crawford got $140m+ I have a hard time believing that Pujols would do a 5/$150m type deal.

Fair for both parties – 7/$210 with vesting options for years 8-10 for PA’s and performance. Pujols could still earn his $300m if he stays healthy and productive. The Cards get a little peace of mind and a lower insurance premium should be break down.

RedSoxDynasty
4 years 7 months ago

8/240 minimum and if the Cards wont pay it then Pujols is in all likelihood gone baby gone! Only a daydreamer would believe he’ll take 5 or 6 years unless the Cards pony up 40 mil per which ain’t gonna happen!

Lanidrac
4 years 7 months ago

You don’t know Pujols or the Cardinals very well. Only the Yankees or Red Sox, both of whom can’t get involved, could afford to guarentee a player $30M when he’s 39 years old, and Pujols isn’t the kind of guy who would demand 8 guarenteed years. 5 years doesn’t seem like quite enough, but 6 or 7 guarenteed years (along with an option year or two) appears most likely.

RedSoxDynasty
4 years 7 months ago

U don’t know baseball players too well do you! Cliff Lee takes less so wveryones hopes are raised cuz one guy did the impossible! Money talks and loyalty walks in sports! What part of Holliday getting 7 years and teams like the Nats willing to spend don’t u get? Oh yeah, if AGonz doesn’t extend in Boston , will be baseballs first 300 million player!

Lanidrac
4 years 7 months ago

You’re overgeneralizing, especially since Pujols isn’t actually a free agent yet. Plenty of players sign extentions a year or so before free agency for less than they can get on the open market (and I repeat that nobody is going to offer 8 or more guarenteed years at his age, anyway). Pujols is that kind of player. For one thing, unlike Holliday and Lee, he isn’t represented by Scott Boras.

STLwaino50
4 years 7 months ago

I hope Boggs or Motte are ready this year. Cause I cant stand watching Franklin close anymore

Ferrariman
4 years 7 months ago

In 2012, i could see Eduardo Sanchez being the closer.

DK57
4 years 7 months ago

yes sir! and i wonder how cleto will do in about two-three years?

InTheKZone
4 years 7 months ago

He’ll never even get a cup of coffee in the bigs would be my guess.

mattevilspawn
4 years 7 months ago

Sanchez is an exciting prospect. Live arm and comes in at a whopping 5’11″/155lbs. El Asesino MinĂºsculo!

Triteon
4 years 7 months ago

I cannot agree with you more!

Lanidrac
4 years 7 months ago

Why not? Franklin has one of the best save conversion percentages (90.3%) in the Majors over the last two years (since he became the full-time closer) along with a very good 2.71 ERA and excellent .642 HR/9 and 2.429 BB/9 rates over the same two years. He’s proven that you don’t need a high strikeout rate to succeed as a closer.

Motte and/or Boggs should be ready for the job in 2012 when Franklin’s contract is up.

4 years 7 months ago

For Pujols to get the 300 million he wants that would have to be 60 million per for 5 years. Not happening.

Lanidrac
4 years 7 months ago

Whoever said Pujols wanted $300M?

westcoastwhitesox
4 years 7 months ago

That would make a great law firm name: ‘Pujols, Penny, Punto & Eckstein’

JamesOrLurch
4 years 7 months ago

I would love to see Pujols sign for $1 more per year than A-Rod just so he can say he is technically the highest paid player per year.

4 years 7 months ago

he could be paid one cent more over the entire span of the contract and still technically be the highest paid player ever

Lanidrac
4 years 7 months ago

Yeah, but without the Yankees or Red Sox as suitors, that’s never going to happen.

onemanwolfpack
4 years 7 months ago

the cards won’t pony up enough $$$ and he’ll hit free agency next year……and the cubbies will make him an offer he can’t refuse! good bye carlos pena….hello albert pujols!

westcoastwhitesox
4 years 7 months ago

That could totally happen, especially since he has already got a World Series ring so that career goal is accomplished. He probably won’t limit himself just to contending teams, so the Cubs have a great chance to get him.

Lanidrac
4 years 7 months ago

Over the next decade, the Cubs are more likely to see a World Series game at Wrigley than Pujols playing a home game there.

Scott Layne
4 years 7 months ago

You clearly don’t know anything about Pujols if you think he’ll take a huge contract on a non-contending team. Winning is more important to him than almost anything.

westcoastwhitesox
4 years 7 months ago

Sorry guys: it was a bad joke about the perpetual suck of the Cubs. I was saying any player to sign for huge money with the Cubs would need to be willing to give up hopes for playing on a World Series champion team.