Some have wondered whether the Cardinals would consider trading Albert Pujols if they are unable to work out a contract extension prior to spring training. Yeah, you can scratch that idea.
Sources tell Buster Olney of ESPN.com that Pujols will not accept any trade proposal. And with his 10 and 5 rights, he has every right to do so. There’s always the chance he could change his mind, but we should probably assume that he’ll be a Cardinal this season no matter what.
This leaves only two real possibilities moving forward. Either the Cardinals will sign Pujols to a massive contract extension sometime in the next three weeks or he will become a free agent after the season. Simple as that. I can’t even imagine what the Cardinals will say to their fans if they can’t get something done.
Cardinals outfielder Dexter Fowler made a critical catch in the eighth inning of Wednesday afternoon’s series finale against the Nationals. With the Cardinals leading 5-1, the Nationals were threatening with runners on first and second with one out against lefty Andrew Miller. Asdrúbal Cabrera worked a full count before serving a 3-2 outside slider to right field. The ball had home run distance, but Fowler tracked it, leaped at the wall, and robbed Cabrera of a three-run home run.
Carlos Martínez relieved Miller, getting Victor Robles to ground out to end the inning. The Cardinals would go on to win 5-1.
The game had playoff implications on both sides. The win bumped the Cardinals’ hold on first place in the NL Central to 2.5 games while the Nationals’ lead over the Cubs and Brewers for the first NL Wild Card shrinks to just one game.
The Nationals will close out their final road trip of the regular season with three games against the Marlins before hosting the Phillies for five games and the Indians for three. The Cardinals, meanwhile, begin their final road trip of the regular season with four against the Cubs followed by three against the Diamondbacks before closing out the season at home with three games versus the Cubs.