The standoff between the St. Louis Cardinals and Yadier Molina may soon be coming to an end.
Now that Yadier Molina is done playing in the Caribbean Series, the St. Louis Cardinals are optimistic that they will soon re-sign their longtime catcher, according to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
This has been the expected result, and it has taken longer than expected for multiple reasons. First, Molina’s demands have exceeded what the Cardinals have been willing to pay. A two-year deal has always seemed unlikely, with odds always being in favor of a one-year deal with a club or mutual option for a second season. Second, they have been waiting for J.T. Realmuto to go off the board and once he signed with the Philadelphia Phillies, it paved the way for Molina to remain in St. Louis.
Now that the series is over, it is entirely possibly the Cardinals and Molina complete a deal sometime soon. It would be a significant move for the team considering the only internal option, Andrew Knizner, would not be an inspiring Opening Day option behind the plate. Besides, having Molina return would give the pitching staff a strong voice behind the plate and a strong leadership presence in the clubhouse as the team has emerged as a legitimate National League contender.
What the money in the deal would look like, however, is unclear. But it is likely the team will structure it so they maintain flexibility to add to other parts of the roster, perhaps the starting rotation and outfield. Among the options president of baseball operations John Mozeliak is said to be considering includes starting pitcher Jake Odorizzi.
But re-signing Molina has been their No. 1 priority for most of the offseason. And it appears that they’re soon going to bring back their longtime catcher after a three-month stand-off.