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Springer Returns

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The Cardinals and relief pitcher, Russ Springer, have agreed to a contract extension today. The deal is said to be for one year, at fair, market value. Springer, who will be 39 next month, appeared in 76 games in ’07, with an 8-1 record. His 2.18 ERA was his career best. View all of his stats here. Derrick Goold, of the St. Louis Post Dispatch, first broke this story, and mentions Springer’s willingness to return after finding out the team’s direction for next season. Here’s the link to Goold’s article.

“I was willing to consider coming back and I wanted to, but I wasn’t sure what direction this team was going in for the next season,” Springer said. “The Cardinals came to the table, they offered me a fair contract, market value … and that it was important for them to remain competitive.”

I like this move. It should solidify the bullpen, which was perhaps the only strength of the Cardinals in ’07. They’ll have three very solid right handed relievers in Springer, Ryan Franklin, and closer Jason Isringhausen. Springer is a veteran pitcher, and is coming off of a great season. I’m also happy for him personally. It was earlier reported that he wanted to stay in St. Louis because his autistic son is enrolled in a special school there.

So, from the looks of this deal, as well as the $8 million option picked up on Isringhausen, the Cardinals are trying to be competitive in ’08. I guess we can put to bed all of the “fire sale” and “rebuilding year” talk. Now if only we had a GM and a manager.