A few days ago, I presented attendance numbers that indicate the St. Louis Cardinals are currently seven percent behind last season while Major League Baseball attendance is slightly up.
A reader poll, which is still running, indicates an overwhelming view that the decline in attendance is most attributable to the uneven play on the field. The 2011 Cardinals seem destined to miss the playoffs as they did three of the previous four seasons as well.
Cardinals ownership has often stated that attendance has a greater influence on their player payroll than it does for many other franchises. Against that backdrop, this post is to consider and discuss what may happen next.
Obviously, the biggest question is whether or not the club can afford to keep Albert Pujols with secondary decisions on key players such as Lance Berkman and Chris Carpenter. The focus here will be on Pujols, with Berkman’s fate perhaps tied to him. I will assume the Cardinals will not pick up Carpenter’s $15 million option, instead trying to negotiate a lower-cost, longer-term deal.
Sound off. What do you think will happen?