Albert Pujols has signed a 10-year $250 million contract with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, ESPN's Buster Olney is reporting.
This qualifies as a huge surprise as just yesterday his flirtation with the Miami Marlins ended and it seemed like he was going to stick with the St. Louis Cardinals. Everyone assumed he was talking to other teams to teach the Cards a lesson for not making him feel as wanted as he had hoped earlier this year. But there was an assumption that he was always going to go back to St. Louis because that's where his legacy was, and that's one of the best baseball cities in America.
But this giant deal feels a lot like A-Rod's crazy deal with Texas. When Pujols is 42-years-old, he will be making 26 million dollars a year. And while all the buzz and hype his signing creates right now, this will be a distant memory in the year 2021 and the word "albatross" will be thrown around a lot.
The only saving grace is that the last few years of his contract, when he will be putting up Josh Willingham type numbers, he will be creating a little buzz because he should be approaching the home run record and a few other big numbers like 3,000 hits etc.
But the the problem is, this is so far above what other teams were rumored to be offering him. The Caridnals were rumored to have pushed it up to $22 million a year. The Angels paid an extra $27 million over the contract.
But at the end of the day, the Cardinals may have dodged a bullet. They come out of this looking like the good guys. They tried. They gave it their all, but Pujols is now the LeBron who left the town that had embreaced him for the first half of his career. And now, St. Louis can go after more pitching or maybe even someone like Prince Fielder, who is a poor man's (and a cheaper version) of Albert Pujols.