Saturday Roundup Applesauce - Albert Pujols Deadline, Kyle Farnsworth And Bruce Chen Have Signed

  • Albert Pujols has told the Cardinals that they have until spring training to work out a contract extension with one of the greatest hitters you'll ever see. Pujols turns 31 tomorrow and some have speculated that his next deal could be for upwards of ten years and $300 million, or perhaps even more than that. If the Cardinals are unable to meet Pujols's timetable and the slugger reaches free agency next offseason, the Mets will be among the favorites to haul him in, particularly with the Yankees already committed to Mark Teixeira at first base through 2016. If the Red Sox eventually sign Adrian Gonzalez to an extension--his current deal expires after 2011--even better for the Mets, who will see the salaries of Carlos Beltran, Oliver Perez, and, with a little strategic bullpen management this season, Francisco Rodriguez, coming off the books just in time to back the money truck up to Pujols's house.
  • Kyle Farnsworth signed a one-year deal with the Rays worth $3.25 million, presumably to replace Rafael Soriano as their closer. Farnsworth was great with the Royals last year before a midseason trade to Atlanta, after which his ERA imploded despite otherwise impressive peripherals.
  • Speaking of Soriano, a source says that Yankees GM Brian Cashman was overruled by Hal Steinbrenner after Cashman's earlier proclamation that the team had no intention of surrendering its first-round draft pick in 2011. Just when it looked like this had become Cashman's team--full autonomy, and so forth--that meddlesome Steinbrenner gene has kicked in again to make certain that Yankee money be spent, wisely or not.
  • Former Met Bruce Chen has re-signed with the Royals for $2 million guaranteed plus another potential $1.5 million in performance-related bonuses. Chen pitched for the Mets in 2001 and 2002, struggling to distinguish himself from the Dicky Gonzalezes of the world. As it turned out, Chen was eventually traded with one of those Dickey Gonzalezes--the Dickey Gonzalez, in fact--in an early-2002 deal with the Expos for Scott Strickland and some other leftover parts.
  • At Beyond the Boxscore, Satchel Price has the top ten remaining free agents, though three of them--Jeff Francis, Jim Thome and Grant Balfour--have signed with teams since the article was published. Carl Pavano, rumored to be close to returning to the Twins, tops the list. Brian Fuentes, a Type B, is also available.
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