With two weeks to go before spring training, this isn’t what Cardinals fans want to hear.
Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com writes that while most “baseball people” believe that the Cardinals will sign Albert Pujols, the club is currently balking at his asking price.
According to Rosenthal, Pujols wants a contract that “reflects his status as the game’s premier player,” one that would likely surpass Alex Rodriguez’s 10-year, $275 million contract as the richest in baseball history, at least in terms of annual salary. Meanwhile, the Cardinals are reportedly frustrated that Pujols’ negotiating stance hasn’t met his public comments of loyalty to the organization.
Rosenthal notes that talks remain fluid and that a breakthrough could come at any moment, but this sure doesn’t sound good.
By the way, if you want to see the most frightening countdown clock ever (at least for Cardinals fans), check this out.
The Tampa Bay Rays were reported this week to be “open for business” as far as trades go. Normally that means nothing happens until late June or something. The Rays are getting right down to it, though, as they’ve just traded closer Alex Colome and outfielder Denard Span to the Seattle Mariners.
The Mariners, who have played some outstanding ball lately thanks to some outstanding starting pitching, and are looking to bolster other areas as they make a push in the AL West, will likely slot Colome into a setup role in front of closer Edwin Diaz. Span will take over center field, allowing Dee Gordon to, eventually anyway, once he recovers from a fractured toe, cover for the suspended Robinson Cano at second base. If the M’s make the playoffs he’d likely do so in the postseason too, given that Cano will be ineligible for any October play due to his suspension.
Colome has saved 11 games for the Rays, with a 4.15 ERA and a K/BB ratio of 23/8 in 21.2 innings.Span is hitting .238/.364/.385 with four homers and six stolen bases on the season.
Two players are going back to the Rays: righties Andrew Moore and Tommy Romero. Moore was the Mariners’ second round pick in 2015 and made his big league debut last season, pitching 59 innings in 2018 but back in the minors so far in 2018. Romero was a 15th rounder for Seattle in 2017 and is currently plying his trade in A-ball.
The Rays, as expected, are using the 2018 season to acquire prospects. The Mariners, who are unexpectedly strong in the early going, are trying to go for it even harder. Quite a big trade for late May.