As Wednesday progressed it appeared more and more like the Cardinals were starting to take control in the race to sign Albert Pujols. Then late Wednesday afternoon news broke that the Miami Marlins had signed pitcher Mark Buehrle to a four-year $58 million deal.
With the news of Buehrle's signing, it seemed inevitable that Albert Pujols would officially be a St. Louis Cardinal again before the night was through.
Pujols remains a free agent though.
Reports indicate that the Angels are now a contender in the Albert Pujols bidding war. There are also reports that indicate a mystery team is involved in the bidding as well, but very little information is out about this team due in large part to the fact that it is a "mystery" team.
So what is taking so long and when will we see a resolution?
The Angels are also extremely active in trying to sign free agent pitcher C.J. Wilson. Wilson reportedly met with the Angels and Marlins late Wednesday evening, and could make his decision tomorrow morning. It appears Wilson is leaning towards signing with the Angles. If Wilson signs with the Angels, it would most likely be the end of their quest to sign Albert Pujols.
If in fact Wilson signs with the Angels, Pujols could sign with the Cardinals as early as tomorrow evening, but according to a recent report it would be more likely that the decision comes Friday or Saturday.
The mystery team still plays a big roll in this though. The offer from this team is along the same lines as the offers Pujols is receiving from the Cardinals and Angels. As for the identity of the mystery team that is anyone's guess. My guess is that it is the Kansas City Royals. Kansas City is the place where Albert Pujols attended college, and many people have previously speculated the slugger could finish his career there. I could also understand why Kansas City would be trying to keep things low key if they are indeed the mystery team.
With all this being said, I still expect Pujols to remain a St. Louis Cardinal. Since January I have predicted him to stay with St. Louis, but I predicted the Angels would be where he lands if he left St. Louis. I am not surprised that the Angels came into play here, but I expect by noon tomorrow they will have C.J. Wilson locked up and be out of the running for Albert.
Look for the superstar first baseman to make a decision Friday afternoon, but stay updated all day tomorrow because something could always develop really quickly.
Keep checking back for more updates.
Many reports indicated that Albert Pujols would make his decision tonight regarding his contact offers from the Cardinals and Marlins. Well, the night is passing by and still no decision.
Looks like we have to wait until tomorrow.
Right now their are reports out that the Cardinals have offered Pujols a contract of 10 years with a value of around $220 million. It is also being reported that the Marlins have offered Pujols a contract of 10 years with a value exceeding $200 million. It does seem that the Cardinals offer is greater than that of the Miami Marlins.
So why has Albert Pujols not signed yet?
I believe the Miami Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals' contract offers are obviously very close. It would seem obvious then that Pujols would choose the Cardinals.
Not so fast.
In my opinion, Pujols has a decision in mind right now. I think Albert knows which contract he prefers right now, and has given the losing team one last chance to construct a final offer. I expect the report on Albert Pujols' decision to come sometime tomorrow afternoon, or possibly into the early evening.
There are also reports out that the Angels could be interested in signing Albert Pujols. I think the Angels are definitely interested in Pujols, but I do not expect them to be willing to bid as high as the Cardinals and Marlins are currently bidding.
If I had to make a pick right now on who Pujols signs with I would go with the Cardinals.
As a St. Louis fan, I have been extremely nervous all night that the sudden news could break with Pujols signing with Miami, but once news came out that the Cardinals apparently offered a 10-year contract, I became very confident. If signed, he would be a Cardinal for the duration of his career.
Do not be surprised, though, if there is a report that comes out early tomorrow morning that says the Marlins have increased their offer to Albert. In one of the biggest contract negotiations in baseball history, it will be very interesting to see how this one all plays out.