Report: Cardinals sign Yadier Molina to a three-year extension

Justin K. Aller/Getty Images
36 Comments

Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reported on Thursday evening that the Cardinals and catcher Yadier Molina were in the process of finalizing a three-year contract extension. Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports confirmed that the deal was finalized. Rosenthal later added that the deal would be between $55-65 million.

This comes as no surprise as the two sides were reportedly making “major progress” on a contract extension on Monday. Molina was in the last year of a five-year, $75 million contract that included a mutual option for the 2018 season worth $15 million. Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported on Monday that Molina felt there were “too many catchers making more money.”

Molina, 34, hit a productive .307/.360/.427 with 38 doubles and eight home runs with 58 RBI and 56 runs scored over 581 plate appearances last season. Despite his age, Molina’s defense still receives high marks and he remains well-regarded for his ability to call games and handle his pitching staff. This contract will presumably cover the 2018-20 seasons, meaning the seven-time All-Star and eight-time Gold Glove Award-winner will be 38 years old when the contract is expiring.

Colin Poche, Rays go to arbitration just $125,000 apart

Colin Poche torn UCL
Getty Images
1 Comment

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Reliever Colin Poche went to salary arbitration with the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday with the sides just $125,000 apart.

The gap between the $1.3 million the pitcher asked for and the $1,175,000 the team offered was the smallest among the 33 players who exchanged proposed arbitration figures last month. The case was heard by John Woods, Jeanne Vonhof and Walt De Treux, who will hold their decision until later this month.

A 29-year-old left-hander, Poche had Tommy John surgery on July 29, 2020, and returned to the major leagues last April 22 after six appearances at Triple-A Durham. Poche was 4-2 with a 3.99 ERA and seven saves in 65 relief appearances for the Rays. He struck out 64 and walked 22 in 58 2/3 innings.

Poche had a $707,800 salary last year.

Tampa Bay went to arbitration on Monday with reliever Ryan Thompson, whose decision also is being held until later this month. He asked for $1.2 million and the Rays argued for $1 million.

Rays right-hander Jason Adam and outfielder Harold Ramirez remain scheduled for hearings.

Players and teams have split four decisions thus far. All-Star pitcher Max Fried ($13.5 million) lost to Atlanta and reliever Diego Castillo ($2.95 million) was defeated by Seattle, while pitcher Jesus Luzardo ($2.45 million) and AL batting champion Luis Arraez ($6.1 million) both beat the Marlins.

A decision also is pending for Los Angeles Angels outfielder Hunter Renfroe.

Eighteen additional players are eligible for arbitration and hearings are scheduled through Feb. 17. Among the eligible players is Seattle utilityman Dylan Moore, who has a pending three-year contract worth $8,875,000.