Saturday, December 4, 2010

Cardinals sign Berkman to a 1-year deal

The St. Louis Cardinals desperately needed to add some firepower to their line-up, and they were able to achieve that by signing the free-agent outfielder Lance Berkman to a one year deal that is worth $8 million. Assuming the Cardinals hang on to disgruntled center-fielder Colby Rasmus, the outfield should feature Rasmus in center, Matt Holliday in right-field, and Berman in left-field; with Jon Jay as the fill-in.

However, given Berkman's age (34), it is possible that him and Jay will split time in the outfield. Berkman has hit over 20 home-runs every season, other than his rookie year in 1999 (4 HR), and other than this past season (14 HR). The five time all-star has been a thorn in the Cardinals' side for a long time, as he was a keystone to the division rival Houston Astros' line-up for 11 straight seasons.

If 3B David Freese can return from injury, stay healthy, and perform at the same level (that is asking a lot), and if Berkman can play like himself, then the Cardinals should see a significant boost in their offensive production. However, the middle-infield, as well as the fifth spot in the pitching rotation, both remain unanswered issues.

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