MATT HOLLIDAY's contract has put a burden on the payroll that must be paid in novel ways. TONY LA RUSSA has begun purchasing sunglasses in bulk; COLBY RASMUS was paid his meal money in worthless Confederate dollars for most of the second half of 2009, as a hilarious (and penurious!) prank. With the hesitant cooperation of the VERSUS NETWORK the Cardinals have begun filming a documentary of the year's Spring Training proceedings. The footage is presented here uncut.
MOZELIAK: Alright, thanks, everyone, for being here. First of all, I'd like to just say that all of you did a really great job out there. Shane—four for 11, that's a great average, right? And Francisco, you definitely pitched out there, I'll say that. Lots of pitches, too, so everybody saw it.
But of course that's not the reason I've gathered all of you here. It's the middle of March—we're coming up fast on the regular season. And I have to reassign six of you to minor league camp. It's going to be really tough on me, and I'm sure we'll see all of you guys soon enough, but for now some of you are—
LA RUSSA: —fired.
LA RUSSA: Did you see The Apprentice was back on? Bill Goldberg is in it. Every time he does something I hope he uses the Jackhammer on somebody, but he never does.
MOZELIAK: Look, Tony, I'm going to use reassigned. These guys might be future Cardinals.
LA RUSSA: Basically, when Donald Trump fires Bill Goldberg, and he does the hand thing, I hope Goldberg does the Jackhammer on him.
MOZELIAK: I'm going to get back to the reassigning.
ROBINSON: Good. Francisco's so nervous he threw up. I don't know how he managed, but, like, on me.
MOZELIAK: Well, I'm sorry to hear that. The first reassignment goes to... Francisco Samuel. This is awkward.
ROBINSON: Oh, not again—it's all over the place, now. As you might imagine.
[DAVE DUNCAN writes something in his notebook.]
MOZELIAK: I'm sorry, Francisco, but no matter how close you get to St. Louis you'll never find a regular spot in a bullpen when you walk a batter an inning. You'll always be a threat to break camp as a Cardinal when you throw that hard, but it's a bad move to start one by inadvertently hitting the clubhouse.
LA RUSSA: What he means is, you're fired.
MOZELIAK: What I mean is that he'll probably be stuck in the minor leagues until he gets his K:BB ratio above two. Which shouldn't be an issue when he strikes out ten guys per nine.
FRANCISCO: I'll be back, I promise, God as my witness.
MOZELIAK: I'm sure, Frankie, I'm sure. The door is—no, over there—to your right—just, just keep looking, you'll find it eventually. Other right.
DUNCAN: Next on the list is Floyd Norrick.
MOZELIAK: Floyd Norrick? Do we know any Floyd Norricks?
LA RUSSA: He's not in this room, and he's definitely not on The Apprentice.
NORRICK: It's—It's Tyler Norrick. Floyd is my first name, and it still appears on certain baseball websites—usually the ones relating to my draft status.
LA RUSSA: Tyler Norrick isn't ringing any bells, either.
NORRICK: Mr. Mozeliak, you drafted me. Mr. La Russa, you've put me into games. Mr. Duncan, I've brought you coffee and donuts every day for the last month.
DUNCAN: I'm sorry. It's embarrassing—for all of us, you know.
NORRICK: That's it. I'm following Francisco right out that door.
MOZELIAK: We'll get you both an usher. The next on my list is... Daryl Jones. I'm sure you'll be back soon, Daryl—just keep up the good work. The 2008 good work, I mean. The guys in front of you are all fourth outfielders, but you? You've got the chance to be something more.
JONES: Sir—uh. What about Matt Holliday?
MOZELIAK: You'll... well, you'll only be 30 by the time his contract runs out.
LA RUSSA: Hey, when Matt Holliday was 30 he got a $120 million contract!
JONES: I'm gonna go lift some weights.
MOZELIAK: Then we have... I'm sorry to say it's Bryan Anderson.
DUNCAN: Oh, God, Matt Pagnozzi? So soon?
LA RUSSA: Moz, you know I love you, but cutting Matt Pagnozzi? I'm going to have to put my foot down. Matt, you're not fired.
MOZELIAK: No, no. Bryan Anderson. He's the one who hits for a decent average with a few walks and a few doubles.
ANDERSON: If it helps, I'll be anybody.
LA RUSSA: Look, I don't care how many times you try to do it, Moz, Matt Pagnozzi stays in this camp. I like what you're doing, though, this'll be a ratings bonanza.
MOZELIAK: Next—next on the list is Mark Hamilton. Mark, we really like your bat, and I, personally, was excited to see that .900 OPS after all those years in the wilderness. But right now there isn't really a spot for it in the lineup. We've got a guy on first base.
LA RUSSA: And at third catcher!
HAMILTON: I could—I could play left field.
JONES: Nah, man.
MOZELIAK: It's—there's plenty of room for you in Memphis, I mean, so there's that.
ROBINSON: You—you guys should have put more than six guys in the room when you did this.
LA RUSSA: Yeah, I suppose so.
ROBINSON: I feel like I'm probably next. I know, I know. I don't hit enough to be a Major League outfielder, Jon Jay is ahead of me on the depth chart, etc. etc. I'm working on second base and I'm covered in Francisco Samuel's nervousness, so—I'm gonna just catch you guys later.
LA RUSSA: Personally, I think that went pretty well.