I'm not sure if the ESPN report that the Phillies were thinking about asking the Cardinals to swap Albert Pujols for Ryan Howard is the best thing that could have happened in relation to Pujols' contract situation or the worst.
Pujols, according to numerous reports, is clearly aggitated to hear his name floated out there in trade rumors. In comments to Yahoo Sports, he sounded at least a little bit concerned that there was some truth to the reports.
“If I’m getting traded, they need to come to me. That’s not my job to go to them,” Pujols told Yahoo. “I’ve been saying all along I want to be here, but whatever, it’s not up to me. I just think somebody tried to be funny, but it’s so stupid when somebody takes something like that serious.”
Will an angry Pujols sour on his commitment to staying with the Cardinals? Or will this be the opportunity for the Birds to put things to rest once and for all and offer Pujols a "lifetime" contract with a no-trade clause?
Pujols said yesterday that he thinks, when the Redbirds are ready to talk, that a deal could be hammered out within 24 hours. So what are we waiting for? Get the big guy under contract. The Cardinals spent big to bring Matt Holliday into the fold for the next seven years and have a chance to win now. So why let Pujols' contract become a distraction?
If they don't act now, the Cardinals face the possibility that Pujols starts to get used to the idea of picturing himself in another uniform. And the more he resolves himself to test the market, the less chance that the Birds are going to get a deal when it comes time to sign on the dotted line.