It isn’t the money that teams should be wary of with Albert Pujols it is the years.
Now that the steroid era has passed, players just aren’t being very effective in their mid to late 30s anymore. Add on to the fact that no one truly knows how old Pujols is, it is a risky proposition giving him a long term deal.
To get him out of Saint Louis though that is what teams will have to do. The Marlins were the first to step up to the plate.
The Miami Marlins aren’t messing around. Their standing offer to Albert Pujols is believed to be for nine years. With a competitive average annual value (say $25 million), that’s $225 million, minimum, and that’s more than what the St. Louis Cardinals are believed to have offered in the spring. Is it possible that two weeks into November Pujols could already have what will be his best offer?
I doubt the Cardinals are going to offer a contract of that length. In the end it will come down if Pujols just wants a money grab or not. He is a free agent, so if he chooses to go for the money I don’t have any issues with that decision.
The question will be his long term legacy. If he stays with Cardinals with two World Series under his belt his legend in Saint Louis and baseball as a whole will surpass Stan Musial and Bob Gibson. If he goes somewhere else he is still a sure fire Hall of Famer, but unless he leads that new team to a Championship something will always be missing even if his pockets are a little fatter.