November 16, 2011, 03:39 PM
The Miami Herald is reporting that the Marlin offer to Albert did not exceed $200M, as some people were speculating. It is apparently for nine years, though.

Personally, I'd like to see the Cards top out at about 7 years with maybe a club option for year 8, and then go to the roughly $25M a year at the most. 8 years/$200M as an ABSOLUTE maximum.

Frankly, I'm pretty split on the subject. I'd obviously like to see Albert retire a Cardinal, but I can't see him having MVP type production for more than 3-4 more years. I'd really prefer a contract in the 6 year range, but I don't think that will get it done.

I think they should sit Albert down, and give him an offer similar to what they gave him last winter. Then ask him if he wants to be just another guy somewhere else, or does he want a big statue outside of Busch like Musial has when he retires. If the money is close, I can't imagine he'd want to give that up. I know some people say it is hokey and that it is only about the money, but Albert seems like the kind of guy that likes being an icon, and I think that he would want to be welcomed back in the stadium the way Stan, Gibson, Brock and Red are still today. Even if he leaves, the Cardinals will still invite him back and retire #5.......but it won't be the same as it is for those other guys if he leaves.

Unless someone offers him a boatload of more money, I think he stays.
November 16, 2011  05:55 PM ET

I'm sensing that the only way to combat AP's contract length expectations is to increase total value of the contract. 7 guaranteed years is the most I'd go, with that maybe a total value of $182M or $189M.

November 17, 2011  06:25 AM ET

I'm thinking the Cardinals are streching it with the $200 million offer. He has more value to the Cardinals than any other team. I'll be surprised if anyone pays more. I'd rather they let him walk if someone is silly enough to come near the A-Rod contract.

I'm a Pujols fan, but a Cardinal fan first. I don't want to see the team hamstrung on payroll for 5 or more years.

November 17, 2011  10:22 AM ET

I totally agree....before it's over we are going to have to find somewhere for Allen Craig to play..I think healthy he can make the fans forget Rasmus (I already have)...I want Albert too but not at a crippling figure to the franchise........

November 20, 2011  12:01 PM ET

I'm not sure I totally agree with the "but I can't see him having MVP type production for more than 3-4 more years" statement. Hank Aaron hit 40 HRs and 96 RBIs at age 39. Is Pujols not better than Hank Aaron? Maybe not, but he's in the conversation. I think Pujols can be productive enough for an 8 year contract worth about $210-240 million. The Cardinals, and the city have already been given a "hometown discount" by Pujols when he signed his last contract. He deserves to get paid for what he is, the best player in the game." The Birds need to sign him to an 8 year deal, with 2 mutual option years. Front load the contract if you need to, just get him signed. Matheny is going to need the nucleus of this team to stay put for the next 2 years of his contract so that he can prove to people that he can manage.

Oh, Babe Ruth hit 34 HR, and 103 RBIs at age 38. I think Albert will be just fine in his later years. Pay him, get him signed. He is worth more to the team and the city of St Louis than anyone can put a number on.

November 20, 2011  02:39 PM ET
QUOTE(#4):

I'm not sure I totally agree with the "but I can't see him having MVP type production for more than 3-4 more years" statement. Hank Aaron hit 40 HRs and 96 RBIs at age 39. Is Pujols not better than Hank Aaron? Maybe not, but he's in the conversation. I think Pujols can be productive enough for an 8 year contract worth about $210-240 million. The Cardinals, and the city have already been given a "hometown discount" by Pujols when he signed his last contract. He deserves to get paid for what he is, the best player in the game." The Birds need to sign him to an 8 year deal, with 2 mutual option years. Front load the contract if you need to, just get him signed. Matheny is going to need the nucleus of this team to stay put for the next 2 years of his contract so that he can prove to people that he can manage.Oh, Babe Ruth hit 34 HR, and 103 RBIs at age 38. I think Albert will be just fine in his later years. Pay him, get him signed. He is worth more to the team and the city of St Louis than anyone can put a number on.

Totally agree with front-loading the contract so that they aren't paying him $30M at age 40. I'd love to see him a Cardinal for life, I just don't want to bankrupt the future for that to happen. I believe Ruth and Aaron to be exceptions to the rule. Albert will likely put up MVP numbers for a few more years, but I can't see him doing it for 8 more years.

It's a tough, tough call.

November 20, 2011  05:32 PM ET

Not worried, he'll stay in St Louis. No way he leaves.

November 22, 2011  08:37 AM ET
QUOTE(#4):

I'm not sure I totally agree with the "but I can't see him having MVP type production for more than 3-4 more years" statement. Hank Aaron hit 40 HRs and 96 RBIs at age 39. Is Pujols not better than Hank Aaron? Maybe not, but he's in the conversation. I think Pujols can be productive enough for an 8 year contract worth about $210-240 million. The Cardinals, and the city have already been given a "hometown discount" by Pujols when he signed his last contract. He deserves to get paid for what he is, the best player in the game." The Birds need to sign him to an 8 year deal, with 2 mutual option years. Front load the contract if you need to, just get him signed. Matheny is going to need the nucleus of this team to stay put for the next 2 years of his contract so that he can prove to people that he can manage.Oh, Babe Ruth hit 34 HR, and 103 RBIs at age 38. I think Albert will be just fine in his later years. Pay him, get him signed. He is worth more to the team and the city of St Louis than anyone can put a number on.

1. No one was as good as Ruth. It's not even close with Williams who is the next best.

2. There were many hitters who were better than Aaron early in their careers. Aaron's uniqueness was his ability to continue producing at a high level late into his 30's.

Very few have continued at very high levels late into their 30's without enhancements. Many have peeked at 32 or sooner like Mantle, Foxx, Allen, Howard, Griffey and a very long list of others. Count on the odds, not the 1 in a 1000 shot when gambling with millions.

December 7, 2011  06:47 PM ET
QUOTE(#5):

Totally agree with front-loading the contract so that they aren't paying him $30M at age 40. I'd love to see him a Cardinal for life, I just don't want to bankrupt the future for that to happen. I believe Ruth and Aaron to be exceptions to the rule. Albert will likely put up MVP numbers for a few more years, but I can't see him doing it for 8 more years.It's a tough, tough call.

One other offer that I have heard about is a 6 yr/$198M with 8% ownership of the team. I am not sure of the validity of this. But I do hope that what ever they offer Albert, that he resigns with the Redbirds.

December 7, 2011  11:09 PM ET

He has no choice but to sign with the Cardinals now. The Marlins are out and there never was a mystery third team.

I don't know how long he's going to stall; but, I think this is a done deal.

December 8, 2011  09:04 AM ET
QUOTE(#9):

He has no choice but to sign with the Cardinals now. The Marlins are out and there never was a mystery third team.I don't know how long he's going to stall; but, I think this is a done deal.

I agree. There's talk about the Angels, but I don't buy it.

He's going to sign it's just a matter of when. Yesterday I read that the Cardinals may not have offered a guaranteed 10 years. I hope that is true. At this point I'd settle for 8 and an option, even if it is more annual dollars.

December 8, 2011  10:54 AM ET

Guess we were all wrong to trust in Albert's word that he wants to be a Cardinal for life.

I'm so glad to have it over and to finally see his true colors

December 8, 2011  11:14 AM ET

Albert thought he was worth more than the Cards offered and the Angels proved him right. I have no problem with a man seeking his worth, wish the non-sports world worked that way too. Thanks for 11 memory filled years and best of lucj in Anaheim Albert!

December 8, 2011  12:20 PM ET

Guess I was wrong about the Angels. And I agree with you, CardinalPride. The offer was apparently over $50Million more than the Cards were offering. I don't blame Albert.

If he had left for $5-10M I'd probably be ticked.

Bottom line is that a ten year deal for $200+ would have been difficult for the Cardinals to absorb and you KNOW DeWitt wouldn't let Mozeliak spend any more significant money for several years. They now have plenty of cash to fill holes.

We are still the best team in the Central. A lineup featuring Craig, Berkman, Holliday, Freese and Molina is still very formidible. I'd like to see another strong lefty bat in there, though.

December 8, 2011  01:03 PM ET
QUOTE(#13):

Guess I was wrong about the Angels. And I agree with you, CardinalPride. The offer was apparently over $50Million more than the Cards were offering. I don't blame Albert.If he had left for $5-10M I'd probably be ticked.Bottom line is that a ten year deal for $200+ would have been difficult for the Cardinals to absorb and you KNOW DeWitt wouldn't let Mozeliak spend any more significant money for several years. They now have plenty of cash to fill holes.We are still the best team in the Central. A lineup featuring Craig, Berkman, Holliday, Freese and Molina is still very formidible. I'd like to see another strong lefty bat in there, though.

Agreed. With Craig on the for the early part of the season, I definitely think the Cards should be looking a Beltran (no more than a 2 yr deal). I think Alberts departure make defense a priority again so we need to sure up that middle. That probably puts Furcal back in the mix.

December 8, 2011  08:03 PM ET

Boy was I wrong! I still think it will turn out to be a bad deal for the Angels in the end.

Okay, now what? We need to greatly upgrade two of three players up the middle - 2nd, short, and center. Is there really anything available? Do we have anything in the minors the Marlins would be interested in? I think they will have to trade Ramirez this winter or they will have some real tension in the locker room.

I agree on looking at a short term deal for Beltran. Second seems to be a tough place to upgrade unless the Braves decide to blow up their team.

December 8, 2011  08:53 PM ET

Beltran could be a good fit and add offense. I'm afraid if we asked about Hanley, the Marlins will want Miller or Martinez coupled with someone like Craig. I'm in favor of going after Beltran, Furcal and whatever we can get for second base. If they find major upgrades at SS and CF, I'd be okay with going with Theriot/Descalso at second base.

December 8, 2011  10:03 PM ET

I agree that Furcal and Beltran would be good pick ups as long as they aren't looking for long term deals.

Don't you know that Houston is PO'd right now. They thought they were getting away from him.

December 8, 2011  10:21 PM ET
QUOTE(#17):

I agree that Furcal and Beltran would be good pick ups as long as they aren't looking for long term deals.Don't you know that Houston is PO'd right now. They thought they were getting away from him.

Yeah, totally agree. I'd go no more than three years.

That's funny about Houston. Hadn't thought about that angle.

December 10, 2011  09:44 PM ET

I just the post press conference interview with Albert. I will never clap for him again. He's still saying it wasn't about the money. I'm done with him.

 
December 10, 2011  09:45 PM ET

*I just read

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