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Adam Wainwright wants to pitch for Cardinals in 2020

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The Cardinals signed president of baseball operations John Mozeliak and manager Mike Shildt to three-year extensions on Tuesday, but it may be the most action the team takes this offseason. The Athletic’s Mark Saxon reported that the Cardinals have “practically no financial flexibility,” foreshadowing what could be a cold offseason.

They have at least one player falling into their lap, however. Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that free agent pitcher Adam Wainwright wants to pitch for the Cardinals again in 2020, according to Mozeliak.

Wainwright, 38, re-signed with the Cardinals on an incentive-laden one-year, $2 million contract around this time last year. He had a decent year, going 14-10 with a 4.19 ERA and a 153/64 K/BB ratio across 171 2/3 innings while hitting all of his incentives, adding an extra $8 million to his salary. The veteran was quite good in the postseason as well, tossing 7 2/3 scoreless innings against the Braves in Game 3 of the NLDS, and allowing three runs over 7 1/3 innings against the Nationals in Game 2 of the NLCS.

If the Cardinals and Wainwright do agree on a deal, it will likely be for another relatively low base salary with salary escalators based on appearances.

Rays’ Erik Neander named Executive of the Year

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At the GM meetings in Scottsdale, Arizona on Monday, Rays GM Erik Neander was named the recipient of Major League Baseball’s Executive of the Year Award for the 2019 season. The Yankees’ Brian Cashman was the runner-up while the Athletics’ Billy Beane and the Twins’ Derek Falvey tied for third place.

Neander has worked for the Rays since 2017 but has operated in his current role since November 2016, taking over for Matthew Silverman who was promoted to president of the Rays alongside Brian Auld.

The Rays had, by far, the lowest payroll in baseball at $53.5 million, according to USA TODAY. Neander’s peers voting him Executive of the Year on the same today the league had to curtail its awarding of a prize belt to the team that suppressed salaries the most in arbitration is… certainly interesting timing.

At any rate, Neander’s Rays went 96-66 in 2019, finishing in second place in the AL East behind the 103-59 Yankees. The Rays claimed the second AL Wild Card and defeated the A’s to earn entry into the ALDS where they lost in five games to the Astros. It was the Rays’ first playoff appearance since 2013 and their regular season win total was second-most in franchise history behind the 2008 team (97).