12/9/11 via St. Louis Sports 360:
What’s the difference between staying with the only home, fans and place you’ve ever known?
For Albert Pujols, apparently it’s roughly $30 million dollars and 2 years’ worth of difference.
That was the difference in what the his former employer and new one offered, and it was enough to draw the All-Star first baseman away from the St. Louis Cardinals and to the Los Angeles of Anaheim on Thursday morning. The biggest free agent decision since the Alex Rodriguez saga of 2008 came to a close, and a chapter (and the hearts) of Cardinal Nation closed it’s time on the Pujols Era in a sudden fashion.
After a week plus of aggressive pursuit by the Miami Marlins came to an official end on Wednesday afternoon, with the Cardinals matching their best offer, it seemed that the club was on the road to regaining its most valuable asset within the next few days. Then, like a script straight out of the WWE, the Angels entered the fight at the last second, and finished off the seemingly guaranteed winner for Pujols services with a devastating blow. This blow was fully guaranteed 10 year deal worth a reported $255 million dollars, which was too good for Pujols to not take.
Now, the Cardinals are left with their hands in their pockets and wondering what’s next. This wasn’t just any player they lost, or even just any All-Star lost. As a matter of fact, it wasn’t just any best player in the game they lost out on. This was a once in a few generations talent that will most likely not stop with just being the best first baseman of all-time; no he’s destined for far more than that. A nod amongst the Mays, Williams, Ruth, Cobb and Aaron’s is where he will land. There is no such thing as just replacing icons, especially when they have so much more baseball left in them.
So how did we get here? Well, that’s a both complicated and simple at once. But just know, the last person to blame is Albert Pujols…
To read the rest of this and see why there literally was no price the Cardinals could have hit that would have made it worth Albert’s while, read the rest of this article at St. Louis Sports 360: http://stlouissports360.com/the-avoidable-end-of-the-pujols-era/
Also, follow my effort to cope and accept the next era of Cardinal baseball by the minute on Twitter at @CheapSeatFan.