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Cards Chasing Westbrook


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Bunch of chatter out there right now, full with info about Westbrook's contract language. This from NBC's Hardball Talk:


Report: Cards targeting Jake Westbrook

D.J. Short


Jul. 30, 2010, 8:02 PM ET

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Report: Cards targeting Jake Westbrook

The Cardinals have Jake Westbrook at the top of their wish list, reports Jayson Stark of ESPN.com.


Spurned in their efforts to land Dan Haren or Roy Oswalt, the Cards were also talking to the Nationals about Livan Hernandez and the Rockies about Aaron Cook in recent days. No longer, according to Stark. Teams that have spoken with the Rockies and Nationals say the Cardinals are now "going in a different direction," namely the aforementioned Westbrook.


The 32-year-old right-hander missed the entire 2009 season following Tommy John elbow surgery, but has a 4.65 ERA over 21 starts this season. Westbrook seems like a pretty good fit for the Cardinals, but sources tell Stark that the chances of him being dealt are "50-50."


You see, Westbrook is owed roughly $4 million for the rest of this season, but would receive a $2 million bonus if he gets traded. According to Stark, the Indians "haven't expressed much interest" in covering a significant portion of that bonus. Should they hold firm on that, it may ultimately prevent a deal from being consummated.





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TORONTO -- The NL Central-leading St. Louis Cardinals made a three-team trade Saturday, getting pitcher Jake Westbrook from Cleveland and sending outfielder Ryan Ludwick to NL West-leading San Diego.


The deal, first reported by ESPN The Magazine's Buster Olney, was announced about three hours before the non-waiver trading deadline.


Westbrook was scratched from his start for the Indians at Toronto. A 2004 All-Star, the 32-year-old righty was 6-7 with a 4.65 ERA in 21 starts this year. He is 69-71 overall in 10 major league seasons.


The Cardinals had been looking to boost their rotation. Kyle Lohse and Brad Penny have been out with injuries and Jeff Suppan, signed in midseason, has not been able to regain his form.


The 32-year-old Ludwick broke into the majors with Texas in 2002, and became an everyday player when he joined the Cardinals. He's a career .272 hitter whose best season came in 2008, when he hit 37 homers and had 113 RBIs and was an All-Star.


Ludwick hit .281 with 11 home runs and 43 RBIs this season. He was eligible for free agency after this season and the Cardinals already have a number of high-priced players such as Albert Pujols, Matt Holliday, Chris Carpenter and Adam Wainwright. Plus, rookie outfielder Jon Jay has had a huge July.


"We've been looking for a quality starting pitcher to add to our rotation for some time," Cardinals general manager John Mozeliak said in a statement. "Westbrook is someone we've had our eyes on for a good period of time."


"We also want to wish Ryan Ludwick all the best with the Padres. He did an outstanding job for us over the past 3� seasons," he said.


The Cardinals got cash along with Westbrook from the Indians. St. Louis also acquired left-hander Nick Greenwood from San Diego. The 22-year-old Greenwood was 4-4 with a 4.15 ERA at Class A Fort Wayne.


The Indians got Double-A pitcher Corey Kluber from San Diego. The 24-year-old righty was 6-6 with a 3.45 ERA at Double-A and led the Texas League in strikeouts.


Information from The Associated Press was used in this report


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