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Walt Jocketty & Tony La Russa sign extensions


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Jocketty Disrespected

 

 

Bob Nightengale?s ?Major League Report? column in the January 26-February 1 USA Today Sports Weekly has a very disturbing and embarrassing close. It follows:

 

?PAY UP: It boggles the mind that clubs won't blink paying their players an extra $1 million or so, but when it comes time to pay their employees, they act bankrupt.

 

The Cardinals, for example, better hurry and come to their senses before it's too late because they're on the verge of losing general manager Walt Jocketty, the 2004 Executive of the Year, perhaps to the Diamondbacks.

 

Jocketty, widely considered one of the finest GMs in the game, is on the verge of resigning and accepting another GM job if the Cardinals don't re-sign him soon. His contract expired Dec. 31, 2004, and the Cardinals' ownership has yet to sign him to an extension.

 

St. Louis offered Jocketty a three-year, $2.1 million extension ? paying him $650,000, $700,000 and $750,000 ? well below market price considering Jocketty's tenure. Jocketty, 54, not only would remain one of the lowest-paid GMs in baseball, but he would be paid nearly one-third of what GMs John Hart of Texas and David Dombrowski of Detroit get. They earn $2 million a year.

 

"I'd like to work out something here, but nothing's been done yet," says Jocketty, whose teams have reached the postseason in three of the past four years. "Several clubs have expressed an interest. If nothing happens shortly, I'll have to look at that."

 

The Diamondbacks and at least one other club have informed Jocketty that they're extremely interested in him if he leaves.?

 

Walt Jocketty/Cards Update Per Bernie Miklasz (St. Louis Post Dispatch):

 

Walt and DeWitt are still expressing confidence that they'll work something out.

 

Unusual, all of this.

 

Jocketty locally ... as recently as last week ... has scolded reporters for bringing it up, and pressing him and DeWitt with questions about Jocketty's future in STL, waving it off as a virtual done deal.

 

And now Jocketty tells Bob Nightengale that he may soon listen to other teams.

 

I don't get it.

 

Cheers,

Bernie

 

Bob Nightengale was on KMOX earlier.

 

- Bernie repeated what was said in his original post and summarized the Sports Weekly article.

- Nightengale said he should be making 2-3 times the amount offered.

- Cards offered 700k while the new guy in LA making 900k. Padres' GM making 1.2 mil.

- Nightengale pointed out that teams don't hesitate to pay players, but when it comes to front office moves they pinch pennies.

- Teams would find a way to fit him in this close to Spring Training if he became availible.

- Bernie or Nightengale said that TLR and Walt are a team, and one should not be payed 3 mil while another is payed 700k.

- Nightengale said that theres no way he can sign that contract without being embarrased. "...everyone has got pride"

 

(This sounds brutal. I dont like the way things sound. I'll be very upset and frustrated if Walt leaves after all he's done for this organization lately. *Sigh* :banghead )

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More from Bernie (Page 3 of link posted earlier):

 

We had Nightengale on KMOX tonight....

 

he said jocketty has been receiving calls from support from other baseball GMs who are outraged on his behalf over the Cardinals' low-ball offer....Jocketty is very popular among his colleagues and they are telling him not to sign the lowball offer.

 

according to Nightengale, even bad GMs like Chuck LaMarr (Tampa Bay) are making way more than what the cardinals have offered Jocketty. LaMarr makes about $900,000 a year. Other salaries cited by Nightengale: DePodesta (LA) $900k; Towers (San Diego) 1.2 million; Dombrowski (DET) 2 mill; Hart (Tex) 2 mill; Beane (Oak) 1.3 mill; Cashman (NYY) 1.2 mill; Hendry (Cubs) 1 mill; Epstein (Bost) 1 mill.

 

Cheers,

Bernie

 

 

Goodness!!

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ridiculous. How the hell you do that in the middle of an offseason where a GM is the most important employee in the organization?

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Yep, simply amazing. You gotta keep the GM happy, esp. this late in the offseason .. I hope they come to their senses and pay up or they will have some mad Cardinal fans on their hands ..

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Not so fast: Owner says Walt will return

 

 

GM Walt Jocketty, after Albert Pujols signed a long-term contract with the Cards.

 

Cardinals general manager Walt Jocketty, whose contract expired Dec. 31, told a national baseball columnist that "if nothing happens shortly" he'll have to consider offers from other teams.

 

Jocketty could not be reached for comment today. But in an interview with Post-Dispatch sports columnist Bernie Miklasz, Cardinals chairman Bill DeWitt Jr. downplayed the possibility of losing Jocketty.

 

"We?ve had a lot of conversations with Walt,? DeWitt said Friday from his office in Cincinnati. ?I don?t think there will be an issue. Obviously, there?s give and take in any negotiation, but I expect to get it done, and get it done soon.?

 

The negotiations with Jocketty were sidetracked, DeWitt said, by a number of factors.

 

?We had to work through personnel issues and free agency,? DeWitt told Miklasz. ?We had negotiations with our own players, then potential free agents. In addition, Walt made the (Mark) Mulder trade.

 

"It?s been a hectic offseason. It isn?t that Walt and Tony weren?t a priority. They knew we wanted them back. We had an understanding.?

 

?Walt?s done an excellent job,? DeWitt said. ?Since we took over the club in 1996, we?ve won five division titles in nine seasons. Walt has made terrific trades, enabling us to put the kind of team on the field that Cardinals fans have come to expect.

 

[More in URL]

 

Well we'll see.. I'm a little more confident now.. Yeesh!

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Tony La Russa (left) and Walt Jocketty had their contracts extended Wednesday. (AP)

 

Cardinals GM Walt Jocketty receives three-year contract extension

 

ST. LOUIS -- The St. Louis Cardinals announced today that Senior Vice President/General Manager Walt Jocketty has agreed to a three-year contract extension through the year 2007. The announcement was made by the team's Chairman of the Board, William O. DeWitt, Jr.

 

"We are pleased to announce an extension of Walt Jocketty's contract through 2007," stated DeWitt. "Walt has done an excellent job of building our baseball organization with strong player development programs in addition to timely and successful trades at the Major League level. We are well positioned to continue the high standards of Cardinals baseball which our wonderful fans deserve and expect, and we commend Walt and his staff on their efforts."

 

Jocketty, 53, was named Major League Baseball's Executive of the Year for 2004 by both The Sporting News and the Negro League Hall of Fame (Rube Foster Legacy Award). The Sporting News selection was his second such award in the past five years. Prior to the 2004 season, Jocketty made several key player acquisitions that helped the Cardinals to their 16th National League Championship and their fourth postseason appearance in the past five seasons.

 

"As a general manager, and a baseball man, I couldn't be more pleased with the situation I have right now," said Jocketty. "It can not be emphasized enough how wonderful Cardinals fans are and how truly devoted they are to their team. In addition, I want everyone to know how fortunate we are to have an ownership group that is so supportive of our attempts to build a winning team for St. Louis."

 

Jocketty was named to his current position in October 1994, and was signed to contract extensions in 1997, 2000 and 2004, with his latest deal running through the 2007 season. He's the second-longest tenured general manager in the National League, trailing only the Atlanta Braves' John Schuerholz, and his 11 consecutive years of service to the team in the GM's post are matched only by Bing Devine (1968-78).

 

For Cardinals fans, some of Jocketty's most celebrated acquisitions will be those of Mark McGwire in 1997, and the signing of a multi-year deal that kept the slugging first baseman in St. Louis, the drafting and long-term signing of All-Star Albert Pujols and the trade for All-Star third baseman Scott Rolen in 2002.

 

In a busy off-season prior to the 2004 campaign, Jocketty enhanced the team's pitching staff by trading for pitchers Jason Marquis and Ray King and he signed free agents Jeff Suppan and Julian Tavarez. He bolstered the team's everyday lineup with the acquisition of lead-off man Tony Womack in a mid-March trade, the signing of free-agent outfielder Reggie Sanders and a trading deadline deal for former MVP Admin Walker.

 

Jocketty, who has worked in professional baseball for 30 years, was also instrumental in bringing Manager Tony La Russa to the Cardinals back in 1996.

 

La Russa signs three-year extension through 2007

 

ST. LOUIS -- St. Louis Cardinals Senior Vice President/General Manager Walt Jocketty announced today that Tony La Russa has signed a three-year contract extension to manage the Cardinals through 2007. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

 

"Tony made his intentions known shortly after the World Series that he was planning to return and we're happy to have a deal officially in place now," said Jocketty. "Tony is regarded as one of the game's top baseball men and we feel confident that he and his staff will continue to successfully position the team to challenge for a 10th World Championship for the Cardinals and their fans."

 

"We are extremely pleased to have Tony re-signed." said Cardinals Chairman of the Board, William O. DeWitt, Jr. "Tony's passion for success, along with his devotion to both the game of baseball and the St. Louis Cardinals tradition, is unparalleled."

 

La Russa, 60, has managed the Cardinals for each of the past ninth seasons, guiding the Redbirds to the postseason in five of those years (1996, 2000-02 & 2004), including last year's National League title, the team's first World Series appearance since 1987. La Russa's teams have obtained berths in the National League Championship Series four times (1996, 2000, 2002 & 2005) and they won a major league-leading 105 games last season, one shy of the franchise single-season record. His Cardinals teams have averaged nearly 90 wins per season and have finished above .500 in all but two seasons.

 

La Russa begins the 2005 season with 2,114 managerial wins, the leading total among active managers and the 6th-highest all-time wins total among managers. He owns 794 victories as manager of the Cardinals, ranking third all-time among Cardinals managers, just 28 wins shy of Whitey Herzog's 822. Tony is only the third Cardinals manager to have held the team's managerial position for at least nine seasons, joining Herzog (9-plus seasons) and Red Schoendienst (12-plus seasons).

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good move: signing Jocketty to an extension

bad move: signing La Russa to an extension

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At times I question La Russa and know that he cant win the big games but he's not a bad manager like some make him out to be. I thought he managed the bullpen and starters for the most part right last year. He's a good manager but sometimes get overlooked because anybody could have won a ton of games with that lineup they had last year. La Russa gets a lot of heat from Cardinals fans that I dont think is fair. He's led the team to the postseason in 4 of the last 5 years.. Not too shabby!

 

Both good moves IMHO.

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good move: signing Jocketty to an extension

bad move: signing La Russa to an extension

675359[/snapback]

 

At times I question La Russa and know that he cant win the big games but he's not a bad manager like some make him out to be. I thought he managed the bullpen and starters for the most part right last year. He's a good manager but sometimes get overlooked because anybody could have won a ton of games with that lineup they had last year. La Russa gets a lot of heat from Cardinals fans that I dont think is fair. He's led the team to the postseason in 4 of the last 5 years.. Not too shabby!

 

Both good moves IMHO.

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with the talent he's had over the years, he should definitely have won a lot more than one world series

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