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St. Louis Cardinals reaction: Adam Wainwright's extension case

The Cardinals starter's contract expires after the 2013 season. What's he worth?

Jared Wickerham

Cardinals right-hander Adam Wainwright has a contract that ends after the 2013 season, and that means extension talks will surely be getting underway in St. Louis this hot stove season between the team and agent Steve Hammond. Tom S. at Cardinals blog Viva El Birdos has taken a look at the pitching market and takes some guesses at what sort of contract fans should expect their ace to have on offer from GM John Mozeliak.

The breakdown pins Wainwright's high and low comparables at Matt Cain and Jake Peavy, respectively. Cain, 28, just signed a 6-year, $127.5 million before the 2012 season with San Francisco. Wainwright's career numbers are similar to Cain's, but he's four years older and has a spottier injury history. Peavy is a few months older than Wainwright with far inferior statistics since 2007, and just signed a two-year $29 million deal with the White Sox.

Should Wainwright and the Cardinals agree on a deal, fans should expect it to be somewhere between two and six years in length, and not quite so crazy as contracts handed out recently by teams like the Angels (five years, $77.5 million for C.J. Wilson) or the Red Sox (five years, $82 million for John Lackey; four years, $63 million to Josh Beckett).