The St Louis Cardinals and Yadier Molina are now in active talks, per report, and it’s expected he’ll return for a 19th season.
Yadier Molina and the Cardinals remain in talks about a contract extension. The expectation is that a deal will get done, perhaps before the end of the regular season, keeping Molina in St. Louis for a 19th season.
Molina has publicly indicated a desire to get a deal done and the Cardinals engaging in talks this soon suggests they feel the same. When asked about the discussions, Molina told Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that talks are active and “moving in an encouraging direction headed into the weekend.”
The Cardinals have made an offer to Molina, according to Goold, which is much further along than the two sides were at this time last season. Molina, of course, expressed his frustration with the way negotiations between his agent, Melvin Roman, and the Cardinals were handled last season. The goal for both sides is to avoid that happening again and get a deal done as soon as possible.
As laid out late last week, Travis d’Arnaud’s two-year, $16 million extension with the Atlanta Braves could provide a framework for Molina and the Cardinals, but on a one-year deal. Goold confirmed as much, saying that the two sides are exploring a similar marketplace to the one-year, $9 million deal that was signed last season to keep Molina in St. Louis for an 18th season.
Of course, Molina is not the same player he was in his prime. His offensive numbers have declined in each of the last three seasons. But his impact remains sizable both on and off the field and makes him an invaluable piece even in his age-40 season.
All signs point to that happening in St. Louis next season for Molina — and there’s even some optimism that a deal could come before the end of August.