Sports Outside the Beltway

Mulder Returns to St. Louis

Peter Gammons

After weeks of speculation, Mark Mulder has finally decided where he will pitch next season.

ESPN’s Peter Gammons reported Wednesday that Mulder will return to the St. Louis Cardinals. The guaranteed deal is for two years and $13 million; if he makes 30 starts in 2007 and 2008, incentives can make the deal worth three years and $45 million.

Last month, Mulder’s agent told the Cleveland Plain Dealer that the left-hander had narrowed his choices to the Cardinals, Indians and Texas Rangers.

“[Indians GM] Mark Shapiro does a great job selling what the Cleveland Indians have to offer,” agent Gregg Clifton told the Plain Dealer. “I think he’s in a good spot to get Mulder to come to Cleveland.”

Mulder, 29, is recovering from rotator cuff surgery on his left shoulder. He was 6-7 in 17 starts last season for the Cardinals before having surgery. He has a career record of 103-57 and a 4.11 ERA in seven major-league seasons with the Cardinals and Oakland Athletics.

Well, it only took a couple of hours to come to a decision. Mark Mulder decides St. Louis. Good move on both sides. Great move by St. Louis if Mulder returns to form.

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