NL Central Notes: Garza, McGehee, Greinke, Cordero

Cardinals legend Red Schoendienst was born on this day in 1923.  Schoendienst spent 15 seasons in St. Louis as a player and 14 more as a manager, winning a World Series in both positions (as well as another Series win as a member of the Milwaukee Braves in 1957).  Schoendienst's career was capped off when he was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1989.

Here's some news from both St. Louis and elsewhere in the NL Central…

  • The Cubs' arbitration hearing with Matt Garza is scheduled to take place tomorrow, reports Bruce Levine of ESPN Chicago.  There is a sizable gap between the two sides; Garza is asking for a salary of $12.5MM, while the Cubs are offering $7.95MM.  The result of this hearing could have an impact well beyond Chicago, as if the Cubs win the hearing, Garza's lower price tag could re-ignite trade interest in the right-hander.  
  • The Cubs unveiled plans today for a new baseball academy in the Dominican Republic.  MLB.com's Jesse Sanchez has the details.
  • The Pirates' arbitration hearing with Casey McGehee is set for February 16, reports Bill Brink of the PIttsburgh Post-Gazette.  Brink's source says the two sides are still negotiating to see if the hearing can be avoided.  MLBTR's Ben Nicholson-Smith recently looked at the arb cases for both McGehee and the other side of the Bucs' first base platoon, Garrett Jones.  
  • ESPN's Jerry Crasnick looks at Zack Greinke's decision to act as his own agent and the history of other players who have handled their own contract negotiations.  The Brewers right-hander is entering the last year of his four-year, $38MM contract but is open to the idea of signing an extension with Milwaukee.
  • The Reds "had an offer on the table" for Francisco Cordero since the end of the 2011 season, writes MLB.com's Mark Sheldon but the team wouldn't give Cordero more than a one-year contract with an option.  Cordero was holding out for a multiyear deal so the Reds signed Ryan Madson instead.  Cordero settled for a one-year, $4.5MM deal with the Blue Jays and Shelton opines that Cordero "can’t be thrilled with how his offseason turned out."
  • Beyond losing Albert Pujols, Tony La Russa and Dave Duncan, the Cardinals' quest to defend their World Series crown could be complicated by their reliance on several players with checkered injury histories, writes FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal.


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