Major League Notebook
The Major League notebook …
ST. LOUIS — With hundreds of fans cheering and many urging him to stay, St. Louis Cardinals star Albert Pujols watched the unveiling of a 10-foot statue of himself Wednesday and then said he wasn’t yet sure where he would wind up next season.
Pujols did not mention free agency during his speech as he stood near the 10-foot, 1,100-pound bronze likeness of himself outside his restaurant. He dodged the issue later with reporters.
“Just like my wife says, we’re going to be praying about it and whenever the time comes we’ll make that decision,” Pujols said.
One reporter noted that “you can’t pack the statue with you,” and wondered if the Pujols Family Foundation would remain in St. Louis if Pujols signed elsewhere.
“Hopefully I don’t have to make that decision,” Pujols said. “We’re just going to see where God takes us. I don’t want to get ahead of God’s plan and say ‘Oh, we’re going to be here,’ and then something happens and I look bad. Whether it’s here or wherever, I believe our foundation is going to help the city of St. Louis.”
The 31-year-old Pujols is a free agent for the first time after spending his first 11 major league seasons with the Cardinals.
NEW YORK — Clayton Kershaw, Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier became the first trio of Los Angeles Dodgers to win NL Gold Gloves in the same year, and Adrian Gonzalez, Dustin Pedroia and Jacoby Ellsbury became the first three Red Sox in 32 seasons to win the AL honor together.
Kershaw became a first-time winner at pitcher when the awards were announced Tuesday. Ethier earned his first Gold Glove in the outfield and Kemp regained the NL award he also earned in 2009.
Gonzalez earned his first AL Gold Glove to go along with two he won in the NL while with San Diego, Pedroia won at second base for the first time since 2008 and Ellsbury picked up his first Gold Glove.
“I try to be a complete player. You can always go into offense slumps,” Gonzalez said during the awards show.
The previous three Red Sox to win in the same year were shortstop Rick Burleson along with outfielders Dwight Evans and Fred Lynn in 1979.
Chicago White Sox pitcher Mark Buehrle was the lone AL holdover, winning for the third straight year. Baltimore’s Matt Wieters won at catcher.
NEW YORK — His major offseason goal already accomplished, Yankees general manager Brian Cashman is still hunting for more starting pitching as he reshapes the team following its first-round elimination.
A weak free-agent class for pitchers is headed by Edwin Jackson, C.J. Wilson, Mark Buehrle and Hiroki Kuroda. Bats are more plentiful, with Albert Pujols, Prince Fielder, Jose Reyes and Carlos Beltran on the market.
“Pitching, pitching, pitching. That will be the main thrust,” Cashman said, a sign the Yankees could explore trades involving low-priced players such as Jesus Montero and Brett Gardner. “I don’t anticipate a bat being of need at all.
CHICAGO — Chicago Cubs manager Mike Quade was fired Wednesday in the first major move by Theo Epstein.
Epstein, who was introduced in his new position last week, said Quade would not return after traveling to Florida to tell him in person. He called Quade an “outstanding baseball guy” but it was time for a change.