Cardinals major league notebook: 02/05/12

The St. Louis Cardinals will make five of the first 58 selections in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft.



The Cardinals lost free-agent right-hander Edwin Jackson to the Washington Nationals. That they weren't able to sign Jackson was not unexpected but the move meant that the Cardinals will have an unprecedented five picks out of the first 58 in this year's June draft.


Jackson was worth a compensatory pick. The Cards will get two picks for first baseman Albert Pujols and another for right-handed reliever Octavio Dotel to go with their own choice.

Jackson had sought a multi-year contract but signed with Washington for one year and $10 million. The Cardinals had shown more recent interest when agent Scott Boras' tone changed more to a one-year deal than one of several years. But they weren't about to go to $10 million.

The Cardinals at the time were seeking veteran right-hander Roy Oswalt at something considerably less than $10 million.

Jackson was 5-2 with the Cardinals after his acquisition July 27 from the Chicago White Sox in a three-team deal that included the Toronto Blue Jays,

The Cardinals officially are committed to a projected rotation of right-hander Chris Carpenter, right-hander Adam Wainwright, left-hander Jaime Garcia, right-hander Kyle Lohse and right-hander Jake Westbrook. Lohse and Westbrook are entering the final seasons of multiyear contracts that include full no-trade provisos while Carpenter, Wainwright and Garcia will be on the first year of extensions or options that the club agreed to last season.


The Cardinals' projected payroll, pending the signing of another pitcher or backup player, is projected at close to $114 million. That would be a high for the franchise, even without 1B Albert Pujols, who left for the Los Angeles Angels.

GM John Mozeliak still is seeking pitching help. But the Cardinals didn't jump to sign RH relievers Chad Qualls and Brad Lidge, both of whom were signed by other clubs in the $1 million range.

Bryan Anderson, a left-handed hitter, might get his best shot at the backup C job behind Yadier Molina. Anderson wasn't particularly a favorite of former manager Tony La Russa or pitching coach Dave Duncan, but new manager Mike Matheny has been high on Anderson's improvement behind the plate in the last year or so. Anderson will compete for the spot with Tony Cruz, who played well in stretches last season, and former Chicago Cubs backup Koyie Hill.

RHP Kyle McClellan was signed for $2.5 million but might be dealt, considering that he isn't a starter anymore nor does he figure prominently as a late-innings reliever.

OF Shane Robinson probably will get one last crack at a reserve role. Robinson has value because he is a right-handed hitter although he was nothing for seven in late-season duty last season.

BY THE NUMBERS: 6 - Number of stolen bases in 2011 by CF Jon Jay, ranking him second among returning Cardinals. INF Tyler Greene had 11 steals.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "It s never going to be the same. You're never going to have the same team as you had last year, as much as you want to. It's a profession with a lot of turnover."

- LF Matt Holliday.



The Cardinals are coming off a World Series title, but general manager John Mozeliak realizes the big turnaround in the season came in late July and early August when the club changed 20 percent of its roster with five additions. Now that first baseman Albert Pujols is gone, the Cardinals are entering a new era, and they replaced some of Pujols' offense by signing OF Carlos Beltran.




OF Carlos Beltran (free agent from Giants), LHP J.C. Romero (free agent from Rockies).




1B Albert Pujols (free agent, signed with Angels), RHP Octavio Dotel (free agent, signed with Tigers), C Gerald Laird (free agent, signed with Tigers), INF Nick Punto (free agent, signed with Red Sox), INF Ryan Theriot (free agent, signed with Giants), OF Corey Patterson (free agent, signed minor league deal with Brewers), RHP Edwin Jackson (free agent, signed with Nationals).



LHP Arthur Rhodes.


OF Allen Craig (knee surgery) is out until May.

RHP Adam Wainwright is in Jupiter, Fla. to begin throwing in earnest. He expects to be ready for spring training.

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