So: The St. Louis Cardinals don't have Albert Pujols. He's signed a very large contract with the Los Angeles Angels, if you weren't aware. What they do have, now, is $200 million they—and Cardinals fans—have earmarked for Albert Pujols for years now. First stop: Complaining about being unable to get on the Jose Reyes derby, which the Miami Marlins wisely sealed before getting in on Pujols at the 2011 Winter Meetings.â†µ
Next stop: Prince Fielder? Probably not, if early rumblings from the various GM-mongers we've been following all week are any indication. For each party concerned, the fit would be a little awkward—the St. Louis Cardinals would be spending a ton of money on an unpopular rival who isn't as good as Albert Pujols, and Fielder would be joining the only team in baseball where he's a clear downgrade at first base.
Yu Darvish, the top pitcher remaining, looks even more unlikely, although he might be a better bet than St. Louis native Mark Buehrle turned out to be. It might be that the Cardinals, after finally freeing up money in a payroll that has looked spoken for for years, will have to wait to actually use it.â†µ