Thanks. Back at you, sincerely. I'm thankful for these chats -- even when we get fired up toward one another -- and for the loyal readers of the P-D. So, thanks!
1) If the Cardinals present Molina a two-year structure that gets him the money he agrees to, I'm not sure why he would fret over what he gets paid when. Contracts in baseball are guaranteed. He has plenty of dough, so it's not like he would really notice if the payment is in 2021, 2022 or perhaps even deferred to later years. So, yeah, I think there could be a lot of wiggle room there, if both sides agree on the scope (two years) and the overall payment of the deal. The latter part might be where there are some disagreements. Molina knows he can't make $20 million per season anymore. What we don't know is how much of a pay cut he's willing to accept.
2) It seems like the Cardinals were being candid when they did not pick up Wong's option. They want that financial flexibility at this time, and they want it for a while as they wait to see what next seasons looks like and what their payroll is going to be. There has been reports of Wong turning down a multi-year offer from the Cardinals, but that doesn't mesh with what P-D teammate Derrick Goold has reported and I trust DG's reporting on that. It's rare that a player who had a contract with an option does not get that option picked up and then agrees to take less from the same team. That's a pride thing. Even if a player takes less, most would rather take it from a team that did not pull their contract out from beneath them via not picking up the option. I can't blame Kolten if he feels that way. Most of us probably would.
3) I'm a BBWAA member but have not been one long enough to secure a Hall of Fame vote. I think as voters get younger, the grudge against steroid users (proven and alleged) will thaw. We are watching that in real time. I don't automatically assume that baseball embracing betting will lead to the ban being lifted for Rose. We're not talking about laws here, but when laws change it's not usually a free pass for those who broke the law (when it was a law) in the past. Some of it has to do with how Rose has handled things too. He has flaunted and benefited from his ban from the game. If he handled things differently, he could have a better case now that baseball is cozying up to betting. Nothing would surprise me. Nothing. But I don't think it's a slam dunk for Rose.