In all likelihood, we will never know the real reason Albert Pujols ended up in an Angels uniform. Some will insist it was about the money. Angry Cardinals fans have demanded an explanation from Pujols, a player they insist lied when he said he wanted to be a Cardinal for the rest of his life. It’s quite possible he was simply telling the fans what they wanted to hear when he made that statement, or it’s possible it was the truth. Perhaps Pujols made that statement assuming the Cardinals would match any free agent offer he received and not expect him to give them a hometown discount. Albert’s wife, Deidre Pujols, tried to bring some clarity to the situation on Monday.
“When you have somebody say, ‘we want you to be a Cardinal for life,’ and then only offer you a five-year deal, it kind of confused us,” Deidre told 99.1 Joy FM in St. Louis.
The Cardinals’ initial offer to Pujols was reportedly for five years and $130 million. Contract negotiations always need a starting point, but that sounds more like C.C. Sabathia money. When you take into account the fact that the Red Sox gave Carl Crawford a seven-year, $142 million contract, you can understand why Pujols’ wife called the offer an “insult.” The Cards’ final offer is said to have been 10 years, $210 million with $30 million deferred with no interest. It was still far too low.
“I’m going to tell you what, listeners especially, had that offer been given to us with a guarantee (i.e. no deferred money), we would have a Cardinal on our bat,” Deidre continued. “Albert and I never, not one time ever, made plans to leave this city. We had no reason, not one reason, to want to leave. … People were deceived by the numbers.”
Fans have already begun customizing their Pujols’ jerseys and newspapers have accused him of turning his back on the city, but none of us know what went on behind closed doors. The Angels gave Pujols $254 million without a cent deferred. The fact that Pujols took the deal would seem to indicate money was important to him. It could also show that the Angels cared more about acquiring him than the Cardinals cared about keeping him.Google+