Nolan Arenado sidesteps Rockies question during Cardinals presser
Nolan Arenado was officially introduced by the St. Louis Cardinals on Tuesday, and the superstar third baseman made it clear he’d prefer to leave his time with the Colorado Rockies in the past.
The Cardinals acquired Arenado along with approximately $50 million in a blockbuster deal this week in exchange for a package of five players: left-hander Austin Gomber and prospects Elehuris Montero (3B), Mateo Gil (3B), Tony Locey (RHP) and Jake Sommers (RHP).
Nolan Arenado is a Cardinal. pic.twitter.com/Rclge3Rq0b— MLB (@MLB) February 2, 2021
The five-time All-Star, eight-time Gold Glove Award recipient and four-time Silver Slugger Award winner was believed to be interested in moving on from the Rockies amid some alleged bad blood between himself and the ball club that purportedly came to a head last season. Things came together in that regard in rather rapid fashion over the past few days in the deal with the Cardinals.
In his opening remarks Tuesday, a relieved Arenado declined to weigh in on where the Rockies go from here following parting ways with him.
“I’m not part of that team anymore and I don’t have a whole lot to say about where they’re headed or where they’re not,” Arenado said, per The Denver Post. “I just know I’m joining a great team and I did the best I could there.”
Despite his relief to finally cut ties with the Rockies, that was not always the case for the superstar slugger.
“When I signed in Colorado (on an eight-year, $260 million contract in 2019), I signed with the intent to be there for the rest of my career,” Arenado said. “That was the intent. But it wasn’t meant to be. The last few years have been tough (with the losing)…. And I’m not the first (big) contract to get moved after a couple years… Things change and I couldn’t be happier for them to change and to be in this situation now.”
The blockbuster contact Arenado referenced in his comments is now a new seven-year, $214-million contract with the Cardinals. There are two opt-outs (after 2021 and 2022) in his contract with St. Louis, but Arenado, 29, doesn’t sound like a player eager to jump ship again.
Who else is excited?! pic.twitter.com/YWZ3eeEo6W— St. Louis Cardinals (@Cardinals) February 2, 2021
“I plan on sticking around. So, that’s my goal. I plan on staying here for a long time. I’ve said that once in Colorado, but truly – I mean it. I expect to be here a long time. I’m not worried about that.” — Nolan Arenado, No. 28, #Cardinals 3B— Derrick S. Goold (@dgoold) February 2, 2021
“As a kid, you dream of winning a World Series, and that’s still the dream now,” Arenado said. “To join this organization, they care about winning and they want to get things done, and it’s really exciting. They’re always competitive and that’s something that got my attention.”
The Cardinals without question elevated the organization into legitimate World Series contenders with the Arenado acquisition. What makes Arenado’s arrival that much more exciting for the Cardinals is just how thrilled the superstar is to be joining the team as well.