Reportedly, Wednesday afternoon is the deadline for any Albert Pujols contract extension with the St. Louis Cardinals, assuming that no great strides are made.
Pujols – widely considered to be the best player in the game today – can become a free agent after this season. Reports are that Pujols is seeking as much as 10 years and $300 million in his next contract, which are huge numbers, even in the world of professional sports.
I’m not going to try and out-Posnanski Posnanski, just as Rick Astley didn’t out-Thriller Michael Jackson. Not gonna happen.
I’m just going to use this blog platform to provide my opinion, and my opinion is that Pujols will be with the Cardinals in 2012.
I certainly don’t expect anything to happen between now and Wednesday afternoon on that front. My guess is Pujols enters free agency after the season to see what his value on the open market really is.
And I’m not foolish enough to think that – as I’ve heard some analysts point out – the big-market teams like the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox have first basemen and wouldn’t be interested in him. C’mon! You telling me the Yankees wouldn’t mind having Pujols as a DH instead of Jorge Posada?
I do expect the Yankees to be involved as they always are. But at the end of the day, I think the Cardinals franchise can’t imagine not having Pujols. And Pujols won’t be able to imagine not being in St. Louis.
Just as Stan Musial stayed in St. Louis, Pujols will do the same. That’s the only way “El Hombre” can really share the torch in St. Louis with “The Man.”