With 5 days until opening day, the Cardinals and agent Steve Hammond are under the gun to try to get a contract extension worked out for Adam Wainwright.
So far, there has been a lot of positive vibes coming out of the negotiations over the last week, here's some of what's been reported on the ongoing negotiations:
A week ago, according to Derrick Goold, Hammond stated that he hoped the sides built momentum during a lengthy meeting.
"We want to get something done before Spring Training ends, and that’s our goal," Hammond told Goold.
"They have communicated clearly that they want to keep Adam here, and
we’ve communicated that he wants to be here. We have to keep working on
Jon Heyman reported that the negotiations appeared to be moving in the right direction with Wainwright saying "I think both sides feel confident something could get done."
Chris Cwik of CBS Sports estimated that the cost of an extension for Wainwright would run in the $21 to $23.5 million range.
Finally, Derrick Goold reported today that both sides expressed optimism that a deal can be reached before opening day.
Overall, I like the sense of optimism, but I'm not going to count my chickens before they're hatched. The Cardinals have been down this road before with Albert Pujols and we all know how that turned out.
If the Cardinals do not get an extension done before opening day, I do not like their chances of retaining Wainwright beyond this year. Once the season ends and he can become a free agent, I think the temptation would be too great for him to test the waters at that point.
Personally, I hope that they can come to an agreement with Waino, but I wouldn't go beyond 4 years and say $95 million. I would give him a little more per year, if it meant a shorter contract. Even if Wainwright doesn't live up to his usual standards for those 4 years, the wisdom and knowledge he can impart on the Cardinals young pitchers will be invaluable.