Yes, the St. Louis Cardinals lost out on former franchise cornerstone and current Los Angeles Angels first baseman Albert Pujols, but now they have a lot of money freed up to spend elsewhere. Pujols signed a 10-year, $254 million mega-deal with the Los Angeles Angels on Thursday, but that is $250 million the Cardinals didn't have to spend on one player who could get injured at any time and sink the value of the deal altogether.
According to Cardinals' general manager John Mozeliak, the team now plans to reallocate that money in the free agent and trade market to improve the team for 2012:
"I assure you we've got our irons in the fire now," Mozeliak said Thursday. "As things get into next week, we'll be active and I think we have a pretty good idea of what we want to see happen now. ... I was looking at it on the airplane and was like, 'Wow.' It does create some flexibility for the organization. We knew that was a possibility, so that's what we'll do. We'll look to redeploy those resources."
The team is currently committed to roughly $80 million in player salary for 2012, and salary arbitration for select players could bump the number up to $85 and $90 million, the Cardinals likely have somewhere around the $20 million previously budgeted for Pujols to spend on various other upgrades and enhancements to the roster. Although Thursday was disappointing for the organization and its fans, there might be some good news to deliver soon if Mozeliak can add valuable pieces with that leftover money.
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