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Saturday, May 30, 2020

Report: Nolan Arenado trade talks between Rockies, Cardinals heating up

The Colorado Rockies may be slowly moving toward a blockbuster trade involving Nolan Arenado.

The St. Louis Cardinals are one of the teams that has been discussing an Arenado trade with Colorado, and Jon Morosi of MLB.com reported on Tuesday that the two sides have moved beyond preliminary talks and begun discussing other players that could be included in a potential deal. To this point, the Rockies have insisted on getting a combination of MLB-ready talent and at least one prospect if they move Arenado.

Morosi believes the Cardinals have the right pieces to make a trade with the Rockies, and St. Louis also has the financial resources to absorb the $234 million remaining on the massive extension Arenado signed with Colorado prior to the 2019 season. Arenado has a full no-trade clause, but he is said to have “deep respect” for the Cardinals organization and is also close friends with St. Louis first baseman Paul Goldschmidt from when the two won a gold medal together on Team USA at the 2017 World Baseball Classic.

The Cardinals may want assurances that Arenado won’t opt out of his contract after the 2021 season, but they would have to add more value to his contract (per MLB bargaining agreement rules) if they want him to waive the opt out clause.

One player St. Louis could include in a trade with the Rockies is Matt Carpenter, who can play at both corner spots in the infield. The 34-year-old is owed $39 million through 2021, which includes the buyout on a club option for 2022. Morosi said it is unclear if the Cardinals will insist on Carpenter being included.

At least one other team is believed to be pursuing an Arenado trade, so the Rockies may have options. While it is rare for a player to be traded only a year after signing a massive contract, Colorado finished 71-91 last season and may be regretting the deal.

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