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Wednesday, July 15, 2020

McCarver opts out of Cardinals telecasts this season

Cardinals Hall of Famer Tim McCarver, who also is a Hall of Fame broadcaster, said Tuesday night he had decided not to travel from Florida to do Cardinals telecasts for Fox Sports Midwest, even though the travel would be to St. Louis for every game.

In an interview last week with the Post-Dispatch, McCarver said he was “ready to go” for the 2020 telecasts.

“My doctor obviously had an input in this,” said McCarver, 78, on Tuesday. “He recommended that I not work because of the travel and because of the obvious things (the coronavirus).

“I told him I started my Cardinal career (in 1959) with a mask on and it is not my intention to end it with a different one with a different texture,” said McCarver. “I got a laugh out of it from him.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 15, 2020 at 11:50 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, tim mccarver

Wednesday, July 01, 2020

Cardinals will be White Sox’ opponent in Field of Dreams game

The Field of Dreams game is still on, and the White Sox are still in it.

The Yankees are out, as expected, and will give way to the St. Louis Cardinals, Major League Baseball confirmed Wednesday.

The game, to be played on a new field constructed in the cornfields of Dyersville, Iowa, was originally set for the Sox and Yankees as a special event Aug. 13 on the 2020 schedule. The setting is the location of the “Field of Dreams” movie, released in 1989.

A temporary stadium with a capacity of 8,000 is being built. Whether fans will attend during the coronavirus pandemic remains to be seen.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 01, 2020 at 02:58 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals

Saturday, April 18, 2020

Yogi Berra Could Have Been a Cardinal for $500. They Said No

It’s another hot and humid St. Louis summer in July 1941. But that’s not what 16-year-old Lawdie Berra is thinking about right now. He’s sitting in the back seat of Cardinal General Manager Branch Rickey’s big black Lincoln on his way to Forest Park with his friend Joe Garagiola up front and some kid named Schoendienst fidgeting in the seat next to him. Poor guy is covered with angry red bites all over his arms and neck. Lawdie heard someone call him Red at the tryout camp in Sportsman’s Park just a few minutes ago, but these bites can’t be the reason.

Lawdie saw right away that Schoendienst can hit — from both sides of the plate — smacking line drives to all fields when it was his turn at bat. And he wasn’t bad at shortstop, either, though the Cardinal scouts kept asking him to shift over to second base. Albert, that’s his first name. Albert Schoendienst.

Schoendienst is one of the many out-of-town boys who saw the same Cardinal advertisement for an open tryout at Sportsman’s Park in the newspaper that also caught the attention of Lawdie and Joey. Anyone who wasn’t the property of a major league team was invited to try out for the Cardinals’ minor league system. Damn, there must have been 400, maybe 500 boys who showed up yesterday, chasing the dream of playing baseball in the major leagues.

That was far too many to judge in one afternoon, so Rickey told all the St. Louis kids to go home and come back the following day. The Cardinal GM wanted to see what the out-of-town kids could do first.

It isn’t every day when the cagiest general manager in baseball history makes a major mistake- and it’s an interesting read beyond that detail as well.

 

QLE Posted: April 18, 2020 at 12:40 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: branch rickey, cardinals, red schoendienst, what-ifs, yogi berra

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Today in Baseball History: Helene Britton becomes the first woman to own a team

Stanley Robison was a streetcar magnate who, along with his brother Frank, became baseball moguls as well. They were the founding owners of the Cleveland team that would become the Cleveland Spiders. They, infamously, sold the Spiders and purchased the St. Louis Browns — who would become the St. Louis Cardinals — swapping out Browns and Spiders rosters, which resulted in the 1899 Browns becoming the worst team in baseball history before their eventual demise.

Frank ran the show in St. Louis, but he died suddenly in 1906, leaving Stanley as sole owner. The Cardinals were a terrible club during Stanley’s sole ownership, finishing in last or second-to-last place in all five seasons he was solely at the helm. In late 1910 Stanley’s health began to decline. On March 24, 1911 Stanley — a bachelor with no family of his own — died of heart failure and blood poisoning while visiting his brother’s widow, her daughter, Helene, and Helene’s young family in Cleveland.

Stanley’s death was something of a shock, but it was nothing compared to the shock delivered at the reading of his will: he had bequeathed controlling interest in the St. Louis Cardinals to his niece, Helene. The remainder of the shares went to her mother, Frank’s widow. As a result, Helene Hathaway Robison Britton became the first woman to own a major league baseball team.

QLE Posted: March 25, 2020 at 12:35 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, helene britton, history, ownership, women in baseball

Thursday, February 27, 2020

Dylan Carlson has flourished at every level despite his youth, so why would the Cards be cautious with him now? – The Athletic

In assessing Carlson’s prospect pedigree and the excitement that goes with it, Mozeliak has compared Carlson, 21, to none other than Albert Pujols and Oscar Taveras.

Please understand the context; Mozeliak’s reference was all about a prospect’s potential to emerge as a generational hitter. Those talents just don’t surface very often, and Carlson rates among the Cardinals’ top homegrown position-player prospects over the last 50 years. That group would include Ted Simmons, Keith Hernandez, J.D. Drew, Yadier Molina, Pujols and Taveras.

Here’s the quote: “I hate to do this,” Mozeliak told St. Louis station KSDK in December when asked about Carlson. “But he’s the Albert Pujols type or the Oscar Tavares type.”

Jim Furtado Posted: February 27, 2020 at 06:42 AM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, dylan carlson

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Cardinals’ speed-based style thrilled baseball fans in the 1980s, but would it work today?

The St. Louis Cardinals always find a way. A way to maximize their talent. A way to stay relevant in a constantly changing landscape. Above all else, they always find a way to win baseball games.

At least that’s the narrative this generation of fans are used to. If you rewind 40 years, you’ll discover it wasn’t always this way for St. Louis.

After winning World Series titles in 1964 and 1967, the Cardinals became mired in mediocrity throughout the ‘70s and were looking for answers to begin the 1980s. That’s when owner August “Gussie” Busch called Whitey Herzog, who had recently been fired by the Kansas City Royals, and offered to let him remake the Cardinals in his vision.

What followed was the birth of “Whitey Ball” at Busch Stadium.

Tempting to just follow Betteridge’s Law- however, it’s probably more productive to figure out the why with this question…..

 

 

QLE Posted: January 26, 2020 at 12:35 AM | 32 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, whitey herzog

Friday, December 11, 2015

IT’S THE CUBS’ WORLD NOW

Not to spoil the ending, but:

But the Cardinals aren’t doomed. They still have a solid lineup, a solid rotation and a solid bullpen, and you’d have to think they’ll add somebody. But for years, some fans have claimed, wrongly, that Cardinals-Cubs isn’t a real rivalry because the Cards have always been so much better than the Cubs. This, not coincidentally, is the same thing Yankees fans used to say about the Red Sox, before Epstein took over there as well. Now, some have said, in the wake of the Cubs’ signing of Heyward, that this ratchets up the rivalry.

But if anything, I believe it dampens it. Even before Friday, the Cubs were a better team than the Cardinals in just about every way. Now that the Cubs took the Cardinals’ best player, the gap between these teams have widened. If anyone needs to prove this is a rivalry, it’s the fading Cardinals.


Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Pujols, La Russa absent as Obama honors Cardinals

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama on Tuesday dubbed the St. Louis Cardinals the “greatest comeback team in the history of baseball” thanks to their thrilling late-season charge into the playoffs and death-defying, seven-game triumph in last November’s World Series.

[...]

Two key figures of the championship season were absent. Manager Tony La Russa retired after the series. And star Albert Pujols signed a $240 million contract with the Los Angeles Angels in the offseason.

Classy!

Tuque Posted: January 17, 2012 at 10:22 PM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals

Monday, January 16, 2012

Retrosimba: An interview with former Cardinals pitcher Al Jackson

Q: You began the 1967 season in the Cardinals’ rotation and in April pitched a one-hit shutout, beating the Astros, 4-0, in Houston. Bob Aspromonte broke up the no-hitter with a leadoff single in the eighth. Do you recall what happened?

Al Jackson: Yes, I do _ big-time. It wasn’t so much the no-hitter. I just wanted to maintain the stuff that I had that night, the control that I had. I wasn’t throwing as good as I was earlier in the game but I also knew that when I got a little tired, I was a better pitcher because I could keep the ball down. Against Aspromonte, I got the groundball I wanted. The pitch may have been down the middle because it was hit in the hole between short and third. If I had thrown it a little further away, the ball may have gone to the shortstop. I wasn’t worried about losing the game. I just wanted to stay on top of mine.

I also had pitched a one-hitter with the Mets against Houston. Joe Amalfitano got the hit. Boxscore Later, I was asked to speak at a dinner in New York. I began by saying I disliked Italians. The room was full of Italians and they looked at me like I was crazy. Then I had to explain: the two guys who broke up my no-hitters are named Amalfitano and Aspromonte. It got a laugh.

Q: Musial was 4-for-5 in his career against you. He batted .800 against you. You were smart to put him on with the walk…

Al Jackson: I’m glad I had a place to put him. I was asked after the game, “Why would you walk him? He’s a left-handed hitter.”  I said, “Why? That’s Musial.” Just look at his record. He’s known for beating teams. And here I am in that small ballpark _ just 250 feet down both lines. I know he can hit for power down both lines. And I never thought about striking him out. That wasn’t on my mind at all.

Thanks to Heck.

Repoz Posted: January 16, 2012 at 06:32 PM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, history, mets

Sunday, January 15, 2012

MLB.com: Wainwright expresses admiration for Tebow

ST. LOUIS—Hours before taking the field against the New England Patriots on Saturday night, Tim Tebow found himself the center of discussion in the Cardinals’ interview room. Yes, these days it seems as if there is no setting that the Broncos quarterback can’t effectively infiltrate.

Putting his Southeastern Conference allegiance aside, Adam Wainwright spent several minutes expressing his admiration for Tebow, particularly for the fearless the University of Florida product shows in expressing his religious faith in a public forum.

“I am obsessed with Tim Tebow,” Wainwright said. “I’m not afraid to say it. It’s almost embarrassing to us athletes that this much emphasis is put on Tim Tebow because that means we aren’t living our lives as we should. If we did that more often, the way he is living wouldn’t be as big a story. I’m so proud of him for living out his faith.”

Tripon Posted: January 15, 2012 at 02:07 PM | 193 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, rockies

MLB Trade Rumors: Bartolo Colon Agrees to Sign With Unknown Team

Bartolo Colon has agreed to a deal with an unknown club reports Bob Nightengale of USA Today (on Twitter). The right-hander wouldn’t divulge the team because he has not yet passed his physical.

Pretty sure it’s either the All-Stars or the Champs.


Thursday, January 12, 2012

Neyer: Who Will the Cardinals Miss the Most?

Rally squirrel, obv.

Thursday, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s website ran a poll:

Whose departure will have the biggest impact on the Cardinals?

The choices: Dave Duncan, Tony La Russa, Albert Pujols…

What I found most interesting about the poll wasn’t that Pujols finished last, but that Dave Duncan finished first, with 42 percent next to La Russa’s 30 and Albert’s 28… I’m intrigued by the notion that Cardinals fans might actually give more credit to Duncan than La Russa for the team’s recent successes. Partly because I’m not completely sure they’re wrong.

But hey, let’s make this about the Hall of Fame, since we could never get tired of that.

This isn’t an original thought, either for me or the rest of the Internet, but I believe Dave Duncan deserves, if not more credit than La Russa, at least some real Hall of Fame consideration…

In the five years before Duncan got hold of Dave Stewart, he went 30-35 with a 98 ERA+. In the next five years, he went 93-50 with a 118 ERA+.

I don’t know how much of that was Dave Duncan, how much was Tony La Russa, and how much was just Dave Stewart getting a chance to pitch. But if I were somehow involved with the Hall of Fame, I would like to know.

I would like to know that, and a lot more.

The District Attorney Posted: January 12, 2012 at 07:40 PM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, hall of fame

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Robothal: Cards’ Duncan taking leave from team

Dave Duncan, one of the game’s most respected pitching coaches, is taking a leave of absence from the St. Louis Cardinals, general manager John Mozeliak said Thursday night.

Duncan, 66, is leaving the team so he can be with his wife, Jeanine, who underwent surgery to remove a brain tumor on Aug. 21, the team announced in a news release…

The team said that Mozeliak will meet with new manager Mike Matheny in the near future “to determine the team’s course of action to fill Duncan’s position during his absence.”

Duncan missed more than a month after his wife’s surgery last season, but rejoined the team for the final day of the regular season and remained with the club through the Cardinals’ march to the World Series title.

Bullpen coach Derek Lilliquist served as pitching coach while Duncan was away from the club…

Duncan is under contract to the Cardinals through 2012 with a club option for the 2013 season.

The District Attorney Posted: January 05, 2012 at 10:40 PM | 14 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Cybermetrics: Why Didn’t The Writers Vote Johnny Mize Into The Hall Of Fame?

Being that he saw his whole career…I once asked Madden the same exact thing.

He got in, via the Veterans Committee, in 1981. So it might seem a little late and silly to complain about it.

But he never he even got 50% of the vote from the writers (he topped out at 43.6% of the vote in 1971 and he got 41.3% in 1973, his last year of eligibility). If we went strictly by WAR, it seems like he should definitely be in. Even now, about 50 years from when he first became eligible, he is 55th in career WAR among position players with 70.2. He had 8 top 5 finishes and one first place. He was in the top 5 each year from 1937-40.

So he had very high career value and peak value. In Win Shares, he also had 8 top 5 finishes among position players, including 3 first places finishes. He was 104th through 2001 in career Win Shares (338) including pitchers. He also missed 3 seasons due to WW II. Bill James ranked him as the 6th best 1B man in the 2nd Historical Abstract.

...In his first year of eligibility, 1960, he got only 16.7% of the vote. Click here to see the voting that year at Baseball Reference. Twelve guys got more votes than he did that year and he had more WAR than all of them. He beat 8 of them buy 20 or more WAR. Edd Roush, Sam Rice and Eppa Rixy all got over 50% of the vote that year, a level Mize never achieved. None of them had even 52 WAR (Mize had 70.2). All but one of the 12 got in before Mize (except Lazzeri). Most were by the Veterans Committee. So they too, did not give Mize the credit he deserved.

I think the writers, and to a lesser extent the Veterans Committee, did a poor job in evaluating Mize. I hope the writers have been, and are getting, better. But when I see the voting for guys like Raines and Bagwell, not to mention Lou Whitaker being gone after just one year on the ballot, I am not sure.

Repoz Posted: December 28, 2011 at 08:53 PM | 51 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals, hall of fame, history, sabermetrics, yankees

Monday, December 26, 2011

Jayson Stark (ESPN): Strange stuff … in the 2011 postseason

The postseason edition of trivia and oddbits that Jayson Stark excels at collecting and presenting…

Here’s one I didn’t know:

All four teams that advanced to the LCS—the Cardinals, Brewers, Rangers and Tigers—got outscored by the teams they played in the Division Series … and won.


Friday, December 23, 2011

Carlos Beltran Signs 2-Year Deal With St. Louis Cardinals, According To Report

According to a report from Derrick Gould of the Post-Dispatch, free agent outfielder Carlos Beltran has agreed to terms with the St. Louis Cardinals on a two-year contract. St. Louis emerged as a major contender for Beltran’s services this week, though the club was cautious given the veteran’s recent injury problems.

  The Cardinals and Beltan’s agent, Dan Lozano, were able to finalize a deal Thursday evening. Beltran missed significant playing time in 2009 and 2010 as he recovered from knee surgeries, and the Cardinals wanted to understand more about his health before completing the deal. The Cardinals intensified their pursuit of the switch-hitter this week.

Thanks to Doug.

Repoz Posted: December 23, 2011 at 01:14 AM | 80 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Perry: Why I’m Not Mad at Pujols

Dayn’s first piece for Pitchers Hit Eighth.

This is a story without a villain:

I’m not angry at Albert Pujols. How can I be after all this? He’s provided us with too many impossible moments to chronicle and ferried us to a pair of championships. The past is unchanged, as some philosopher said at some point, probably in the original French.

...We’ll never, ever know the full complement of motivations that led him to do this. Pujols might want a new challenge after winning it all and seeing the only manager he’s ever known retire. He might believe the Angels provide him with a better opportunity to win than the Cardinals do (although there’s a self-fulfilling element to that prophecy). It could be layers of reasons. The weather. The chance to ease into the DH role in five years or so. Maybe his favorite cousin lives in Mission Viejo. He enjoys fresh, roadside citrus. Whatever. Even the most enterprising reporters aren’t privy to his thoughts.

...Most of all, to read into L’Affaire Pujols the basest of impulses is to pretend you know things you simply don’t. You’ll never know his innermost workings, the exact tenor of negotiations, or his true reasons for making this choice. Never. It makes for a tidy narrative to color him as a bad actor in all of this, but one could just as easily say the organization, after enjoying a decade-plus of Pujols for pennies on the dollar, is the disloyal party, the one who’s most transparently “about the money.” I choose not to make either case, mostly because a negotiation isn’t a morality tale.

And with that, I am sufficiently purged. I’m also ready for actual baseball.

Repoz Posted: December 17, 2011 at 05:03 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, cardinals, history

Friday, December 16, 2011

Gordon: Mozeliak assembling strong clubhouse for Matheny

Not without stud-framing clips, you don’t.

This team must keep as much of the 2011 vibe as possible. The Cards will have a different feel without destined Hall of Famers Tony La Russa and Albert Pujols setting the tempo on and off the diamond, but the team can maintain a good temperament by keeping the right sort of players.

Mozeliak learned plenty while sparring with La Russa over his roster make-up. Some players can excel in part-time roles and others cannot.

La Russa placed a premium on getting optimal fits for platoon and bench roles. Schumaker is a classic case. So is Punto.

Fans tend to dismiss the impact of such players, but a strong supporting cast can keep a team keep rolling through the 162-game grind. The sturdy makeup of the 2011 team allowed it to step over fallen teams and reach the playoff bracket with its unlikely late charge.

...Fielding a team with great mental/emotional make-up will be just as important as maximizing offensive and defensive potential — especially with a first-year manager in charge.

Repoz Posted: December 16, 2011 at 11:18 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: cardinals

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

What Lou Brock Will Tell Pujols

When the good Lord opens the sky and rain of disdain falls about ye…make sure you got a freakin’ Brockabrella handy!

Brock is planning on meeting with Pujols soon.  I asked him what he plans to say to the newest Angel.

“The first thing I would say is: ‘Relax,’” Brock said.  “Take a break from all of this.  And most of all, do not let your good deeds here in St. Louis be spoken of as evil because you went to Anaheim.”

...About a week before the Winter Meetings, Brock visited with Pujols.  He noticed that Pujols became somewhat uncomfortable when people around them would bring up the future.

“Albert, in his mind, was coming back to St. Louis,” Brock said.  “(But) every time somebody around us would mention that…he would just smile.  It was an indication that ‘I don’t want to talk about it – my body language may say one thing, but I’m really thinking another.’” “But it actually was to stay in St. Louis,” Brock insisted.

How many years of baseball does Pujols realistically have left in him?

“I think Albert is on the mountaintop,” Brock said.  “How long can he sustain being at the top of his game?  I would say he has a good six or seven years left.

“The decline can start — and will start — on the other side of the mountain,” Brock notes, “but you’re talking about six or seven years away.  That’s a long time.”

Repoz Posted: December 14, 2011 at 04:02 AM | 8 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, cardinals

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Albert Pujols’ wife says Cardinals fans ‘deceived’

“The offers that people have seen on television, I’m going to tell you what .... had that offer been the one that was given to us, with guarantee, we would have a bird on the bat. ... What I’m saying is it wasn’t a guaranteed situation. When you have somebody say, ‘We want you to be a Cardinal for life’ and only offer you a five-year deal ... it kind of confused us. ... Well, we got over that insult and felt like Albert had given so much of himself to baseball and into the community that he at least deserved the opportunity to have real life-long—you know, I tell you what—we didn’t want to go through this again. Free agency, it’s stressful.”

After Pujols became a free agent, the Cardinals’ initial offer was five years guaranteed for $130 million, far less than the roughly $198 million they offered Pujols in spring training. Their ultimate 10-year, $210 million offer deferred a significant portion of salary without interest.

Hey, at least they have Matt Holiday and Rafael Furcal

Jack Sommers Posted: December 13, 2011 at 02:04 PM | 52 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, cardinals

Hannibal Courier Post: Tim McCarver is not a Hall of Famer

Lifting from Mountaintop Motel Massacre’s sweet Evelyn here…“Please do not piss off Cardinal fans. They already are.”

Tim McCarver, that biased broadcaster, has been elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

From here on out, he’ll be referred to as a Hall of Famer.

But I’ll just call him Tim McCarver.

Because in my eyes, he is NOT a Hall of Famer. He is a dumbfounded broadcaster who, for whatever reason, has been on the air way too long.

...He is constantly negative toward the Cardinals and does not have any credibility. I can remember when he referred to former pitcher Donovan Osborne as Donovan “Os-burn.” Even during this past postseason, McCarver said the word strike was made up of five letters. Add all that to his sentence structure — that I’m sure makes English teachers squirm — that’s not excellence.

McCarver was a great ballplayer, I respect him for that. In that genre, he’s still not a Hall of Famer (didn’t have the numbers nor did he stand out), but he was certainly an impacting player for the teams he played on.

Losing out on the award this year is Texas Rangers broadcaster Eric Nadel, who is the best descriptive broadcaster there is; McCarver’s former teammate Mike Shannon, who is the most unique broadcaster in the game; and a large number of others who were so much more deserving.

Repoz Posted: December 13, 2011 at 11:02 AM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: announcers, cardinals, hall of fame, history, media, television

Monday, December 12, 2011

Posnanski: The Real Albert Pujols

I have, on occasion, been allowed past the moat and drawbridge and into Albert Pujols’ world. In those circumstances, I have found him to be a likable guy — determined, focused, self-effacing, respectful of the past, loyal to his friends, energized by faith and some of the good things that his fame and money have allowed him to do. I have also, on occasion, been frozen out like just about everybody else. In those circumstances I have found him to be difficult, cold, defensive, overly sensitive, angry, surprisingly eager to believe the worst about people.

It’s tempting to say that one or the other is the “real” Albert Pujols, but I don’t think it’s ever that easy….

CFBF's Overflowing Pathos Posted: December 12, 2011 at 10:56 PM | 159 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, cardinals

Miklasz: Poor Albert had no choice

6. What about this quote, which you offered Saturday: “I made a decision. I’m being obedient. I didn’t want to go to a place God didn’t want me to go to.”

Really? God ordered you to Anaheim? I wonder what God would have advised had the Angels offered less money than the Cardinals. I’m assuming God was angry over the Miami Marlins’ refusal to offer no-trade protection in their contract bid. Can you tell us how God would have reacted if the Cardinals had offered $254 million or more over 10 years?

7. Pujols was won over when Moreno called him to turn on the charm in a 30-minute phone call. Is that all it took? An owner telling you what you wanted to hear, even though you had never met the man? That means more than what has been a mutually beneficial 11-year relationship with St. Louis?

8. Albert are we really supposed to believe that you would have accepted the Cardinals’ $210 million over the Angels’ $254 million if DeWitt had called to whisper sweet nothings and coo in your ear and plead with you to stay?

Oh, that’s right. We forgot.

It wasn’t about the money.

Best of luck to you, Albert.

Thanks to Pedrone.

Repoz Posted: December 12, 2011 at 06:37 PM | 86 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, cardinals

Murray Chass: RAYS’ G.M. SHOWS LOYALTY; PUJOLS?


The Pujols’ negotiation was not based on infatuation but on negotiation. The Angels’ offer appealed to Pujols and his agent, Dan Lozano, because it was decidedly better than any other he received.

At the beginning of last week’s winter meetings, the newly-named and housed Miami Marlins made a big splash, offering a 10-year deal. But it reportedly included enough deferred money to reduce the present-day value of the package significantly, and the Marlins declined Pujols’ request for a no-trade clause in the contract.

According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, the Cardinals, whose talks for a contract extension Pujols cut off at the start of last spring training (rejecting a 9-year $198 million proposal), began post-season negotiations with a five-year $130 million offer.

With 10-year offers in the air and on the table, that proposal grew to $210 million for 10 years. As with the Marlins’ offer, though, this one included a significant amount of deferred money. One person told me the Cardinals proposed deferring $30 million for 20 years without interest.

Since the deal was not accepted, the people who usually compute present-day value of contracts that include deferred compensation didn’t do the math, but as a rule of thumb I have used in such instances in the past, I think it’s safe to figure that the $30 million deferred would produce a present-day value of roughly have [sic] that amount. That means the Cardinals’ $210 million offer was really under $200 million, say $195 million at most.

The Angels came in with their 10-year offer of $254 million – nothing deferred – and also, the Post-Dispatch said, loaded with bonuses for milestone incentives that could make the package worth more than $280 million. ...

In terms of money, though, the argument could be made that the Cardinals’ offer provided Pujols with enough money and how much more did he need. But if you reduce the Cardinals’ $210 million because of the deferred money and raise the Angels’ $254 million offer because of the potential bonuses, the difference becomes more than a paltry few million a year. ...

Fay Vincent, the former baseball commissioner, thinks the Cardinals and other teams with such high-priced superstars could and should do something else. Taking a cue from Hollywood, where he once ran Columbia Pictures, Vincent believes the time has come for teams to pay part of an expensive contract in team equity.

Instead of paying astronomical salaries, he says, give player a small ownership share of the team, and when he leaves the team, he can sell the share back to the team. The player would benefit from the plan as well as the club because his capital-gains tax would be less than his income tax.

Earlier this year I saw an isolated mention of the Cardinals having made such a proposal but having Pujols reject it, but I have not confirmed that development.

If it did happen, it would not surprise me if the player rejected the idea because his agent would strongly oppose it. Agents want their commissions now, not 5 or 10 years from now when the player might sell back his share of the team and receive his monetary share.

Come to think of it, owning a piece of the team might induce greater loyalty on both sides.

bobm Posted: December 12, 2011 at 03:09 AM | 23 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, business, cardinals, miami

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Pujols: ‘It was about the commitment.’

The Commitment: He Had Absolutely Nothing. But He Was Willing To Risk It All!

“I don’t want to talk about negotiations,” Pujols told the Post-Dispatch shortly after a second news conference held inside the stadium. “But to tell you the truth, it wasn’t about the money. I’m going to die saying that, because it wasn’t about the money. It was about the commitment.”

Pujols refused to discuss his departure from the Cardinals during the open-air phase of Saturday’s appearance but later described a process that included eight phone conversations Wednesday with chairman Bill DeWitt Jr. and general manager John Mozeliak. The marathon left Pujols drained, admittedly emotional and finally resigned to the fact that Angels’ owner Arte Moreno’s long-distance lightning strike offered a greater sense of belonging as well as more dollars.

“It was about the way he made me feel,” Pujols said. “Arte made me feel like he wanted me to be with the Angels forever. He doesn’t want me to be 37 years old and go somewhere else.”

The comment was an oblique reference to the Cardinals’ five-year, $130 million offer earlier this month — their first bid since Pujols rejected the club’s nine-year, $198 million bid during spring training. Pujols’ new contract also includes a 10-year personal service provision, something the Cardinals were reluctant to discuss, according to sources familiar with the process.

...“I know people back in the city of St. Louis think it’s all about the money and are upset about that,” Pujols said. “I have all the offers out there for a lot of money. They’re calling me ‘liar’ and all that stuff. That’s all good. I went through that when I made the decision. It was tough. I know what they’re going through. They’re losing somebody that has been part of the community. And I feel for that. My wife and I felt that pain, too.”

Repoz Posted: December 11, 2011 at 12:31 PM | 55 comment(s)
  Beats: angels, business, cardinals, media

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