Trade Rumor: Albert Pujols to Philly for Ryan Howard
|Could Ryan Howard be returning to his hometown of St. Louis?|
The two first basemen are the same age and put up gaudy offensive numbers -- though Pujols is considered the better player. Make that the best player in baseball.
Howard's salary ($19 million this year, $20 mil in 2011) is currently more than Pujols', but he'd likely be cheaper in the long run. There's also the fact that Howard is a St. Louis native (Lafayette High School). He's also a left-handed bat, which the Cardinals could certainly use.
The logic for a Howard for Pujols swap, as discussed within the Phillies' organization, could fall along these lines: Pujols, 30 years old, is eligible for free agency after the 2011 season, and early conversations about a contract extension have not led to any long-term deal. The expectation within baseball is that Pujols may ask for a deal that would rival, in annual value, the record-setting 10-year, $275 million deal that Alex Rodriguez negotiated with the Yankees in fall 2007.
Whaddya think? Me thinks if the Cardinals would ever trade Pujols, Howard is one of the few -- if only -- players who could make it work.