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Molina planned to ask for $140 million in free agency

Some Cardinals fans seem to think that the team over-paid for five more years of catcher Yadier Molina.

But, according to a story by CBS's John Heyman, Molina planned to ask for a whole lot more than the five years and $75 million he got if he hit the free agent market this fall.

Molina's agent intended to ask for almost twice what the catcher got from the Cardinals: $140 million over seven years. Does it sound outrageous? Absolutely. But it's a certainty that some guy in the More Money Than Brains Club would have paid it -- or something close to it -- to pry Yadi out of St. Louis.

Like with Albert Pujols, there is simply no way the Redbirds would have been able to compete for Molina's services on the open market. Even if another club wasn't willing to match the $140 million demand, it's not tough to imagine that someone would have paid him $80 million for four years or $100 million for five.

According to Heyman's story, one MLB executive said Molina is well known as the best catcher in the National League. So he's fairly certain Molina's unique talent would cause a bidding frenzy. The unidentified exec referred to Yadi as "the Deion Sanders of baseball" which I don't quite understand. Is he trying to say that Yadi can't tackle?

One thing that has crossed my mind as far as Molina's value goes: I wonder if the fantastic pick-off play that he used with such success with Albert Pujols at first base will translate to Lance Berkman. Although it may seem like a gimmick, having the ability to pull an out from a hat when you need it most is an invaluable asset. And it is devastating to the opposition to have a rally unceremoniously snuffed out in such a way.

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