Yadier Molina wants Adam Wainwright to re-sign with Cardinals

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Yadier Molina #4 and Adam Wainwright #50 of the St. Louis Cardinals walk in from the bullpen prior to the home opener against the Milwaukee Brewers at Busch Stadium on April 8, 2021 in St Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images)
Yadier Molina #4 and Adam Wainwright #50 of the St. Louis Cardinals walk in from the bullpen prior to the home opener against the Milwaukee Brewers at Busch Stadium on April 8, 2021 in St Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Jeff Curry/Getty Images) /
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Adam Wainwright pushed for the St. Louis Cardinals to re-sign Yadier Molina last winter. Now, Molina intends to return the favor.

After Adam Wainwright re-signed with the St. Louis Cardinals last spring, he pushed for the organization to re-sign catcher Yadier Molina. The truth, however, is that Wainwright’s campaign lasted much longer than that, with the two players agreeing that they would play together in 2021 — whether that be in St. Louis or somewhere else.

Both players, of course, returned to the Cardinals. And now that Molina has returned on a one-year, $9 million extension for the 2022 season, he intends to return the favor to Wainwright and push him to return to St. Louis for another season, telling Katie Woo of The Athletic, “In the offseason, almost every day (Wainwright) would call me asking, ‘What are you going to do, you need to sign. Now it’s my turn to do that. It’s my turn to call him every day and tell him, ‘Hey, you need to come back because I can’t do this by myself.’”

Wainwright and Molina have played their entire careers in St. Louis and it’s unimaginable that the two would play elsewhere in what could perhaps be the final seasons of their careers. Wainwright, 38, has publicly said that he will consider retiring in the offseason, but with Molina set to return for a 19th season, it’s likely that Wainwright will now return for another season.

Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak joked that the Molina negotiation was the easiest and quickest discussions he’s had since taking the job and Wainwright’s figure to follow in a similar footprint. While it may not happen before the season ends, and may not happen for some time yet, Wainwright has more than earned a new contract — and even a raise from the one-year, $8 million contract he signed last winter.

After all, Wainwright has once again led the Cardinals’ rotation in innings pitched and has looked like a dominant pitcher for most of the season, pitching at least eight innings with regularity in recent months. His 3.10 ERA in 25 starts more than suggests he’s capable of assuming that role next season, though the team should have Jack Flaherty back to 100 percent health and also bring in other upgrades to round out the rotation.

Next. 3 players impacted by Yadier Molina's return. dark

But Wainwright coming back for another season feels like a near certainty and Molina is going to make sure it comes in St. Louis.

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