SI.com's Jon Heyman tweets this afternoon that the Cardinals and Albert Pujols are so far apart in their contract dealings that there is "virtually no chance" of an extension before Feb. 16.
This is certainly a disturbing report. But I wonder how much of it is fact and how much of it is speculation.
Reports we've heard so far indicate that the Redbirds haven't even made Pujols an offer. So, if there is no offer, how could we tell how far apart the sides are?
I tend to believe the lack of an offer is accurate -- unless one has been made in the last few hours -- because if someone knew of an offer and the numbers behind it, we would certainly have heard about it by now.
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I'm certainly not being blindly optimistic. Until two weeks ago I thought it to be more than likely that Pujols would spend his whole career in St. Louis. I am horrified by the way the Cardinals have handled this situation since then, showing absolutely no sense of urgency or dedication to getting the job done.
But, because of a total lack of details, I tend to believe that these reports are based on speculation of un-named sources and not cold, hard facts.