In the understatement of the baseball off season so far, St. Louis Cardinals chairman Bill DeWitt said that it was "unlikely" that star first basemen Albert Pujols will accept the team's arbitration offer before the Wednesday night deadline. Accepting the arbitration offer would bring Pujols back to St. Louis on a one-year deal, and needless to say, that certainly isn't happening. The Cardinals obviously know this, but offering Pujols arbitration is a formality to ensure that the Cardinals will receive compensation in return if Pujols does sign with another franchise.
Heading into this week, the suspense surrounding Pujols revolves not around the possibility of him accepting a one-year contract, but whether or not the Miami Marlins' reported plan to aggressively pursue Pujols will actually make the Cardinals sweat.
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