St. Louis Cardinals general manger John Mozeliak says the club will exercise catcher Yadier Molina's $7 million team option for 2012 on Monday, reports Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retaining Molina doesn't come as a surprise to anyone; a slam dunk of a decision for St. Louis.
The third and youngest of the Molina brothers is highly considered as the best defensive catcher in the majors, from his receiving skills to gunning down runners. But in 2011, the 29-year-old Molina enjoyed a break out year at the plate, hitting .305/.349/.465 with 14 home runs and 32 doubles in 518 plate appearances. Marking the first time in Molina's career he hit double-digit homers, more than 26 doubles, and slugged over .400.
Molina, entering the final year under team control, will earn $7 million in his contract year. He would undoubtedly earn more than that and be able secure a multi-year contract if and when he hits the open market.