As another offseason of eye-poppingly large free-agent contracts begins to wind down, the St. Louis Cardinals find themselves in an unfortunate, yet familiar situation as one of their biggest stars heads into the final year of his contract.
It was Albert Pujols in 2011; it will be Adam Wainwright in 2013.
The Cardinals co-ace is headed into the final year of his six-year, $59.4-million contract. That number is almost laughably low for a former Cy Young Award winner with a career 80-48 record, 3.15 ERA. In the past year, pitchers with less impressive numbers have signed contracts nearly triple the size of Wainwright’s current deal.
The San Francisco Giants signed Matt Cain in April to a six-year, $127.5-million extension. That was, of course, before he had a career season that included starting the All-Star Game and pitching a perfect game June 13 against the Houston Astros. The Los Angeles Dodgers also recently signed former Cy Young winner Zack Grienke to a six-year, $147-million ...