Good news, everyone: There's one thing even the St. Louis Cardinals of August 2011 can't screw up, and that's
not trading Colby Rasmus again exercising their two-year option for Adam Wainwright's services, which would have vested automatically if he hadn't required elbow surgery in Spring Training. The Cardinals' dinged-up ace will be in the Cardinals' rotation at the bargain price of $21 million for those two seasons; he's expected back by the start of the 2012 season, though I don't think anybody on the Cardinals' medical staff wants to risk angering the Ghost of Troy Glaus.
Meanwhile, the Cardinals will have to decide whether they want to exercise fellow ex-ace Chris Carpenter's much more expensive player option, which costs $14 million over a $1 million buyout for 2012. Carpenter's peripherals have been basically solid, but his problems with no decisions and hard-luck losses have made this season look like a much steeper decline than it's actually been; the best deal for both parties concerned might be to renegotiate it into a two-year deal, as the Reds did when they acquired Scott Rolen and his massive contract.