The inevitable has happened. Yadier Molina is coming back to the St. Louis Cardinals.
Molina and his agent, Melvin Roman, used every negotiating tactic to try to get the most money out of the Cardinals. They publicly revealed that they were talking to other teams, including the New York Yankees, New York Mets and San Diego Padres, among others. Molina threatened to retire if he did not get the deal he sought. And his brother, Bengie, said that Yadier would have no problems leaving St. Louis if he did not feel appreciated by the franchise.
But a return always felt inevitable, and the two sides were able to work out a deal before pitchers and catchers reported for spring training. Molina and the Cardinals have been close to a deal for some time, with both sides planning to complete it soon after he returned to the United States after playing in the Caribbean Series.
Now that it’s done, it wraps up a significant stretch for the Cardinals. First, they brought back pitcher Adam Wainwright. Second, they acquired Nolan Arenado while absolutely fleecing the Colorado Rockies. Now, they brought back their future Hall of Fame catcher for another season.
The Molina addition not only solidifies the catcher position and lineup, but it helps the pitching staff with a veteran presence behind the plate. And it puts the Cardinals in prime position to compete in the National League with the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres.
So while there were twists and turns, and some doubts that a deal would get ultimately get done, Molina is back where he belongs — behind the plate at Busch Stadium.