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Originally published Wednesday, October 6, 2010 at 9:14 PM

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Cardinals exercise option for Pujols

The St. Louis Cardinals exercised a $16 million club option for 2011 with three-time NL MVP Albert Pujols. The Cardinals also announced...

ST. LOUIS — The St. Louis Cardinals exercised a $16 million club option for 2011 with three-time NL MVP Albert Pujols.

The Cardinals also announced Wednesday that left-handed reliever Trever Miller had met a vesting option at $2 million for next season.

Pujols, 30, led the National League with 42 home runs and won his first runs batted in title with 118, and tied Matt Holliday for the team batting lead at .312.

Pujols topped 400 homers and set a franchise record with his 39th career multihomer game.

The Cardinals were expected to pick up the option on Pujols' contract. The team has said there's no specific timetable for beginning negotiations on a new long-term deal with Pujols, who can be a free agent after next season.

Red Sox owners

bid for Liverpool

LONDON — The owners of the Boston Red Sox are trying to buy the financially ailing Liverpool soccer club for $477 million — about half the asking price of the current American owners.

If approved, it would unite two of the most storied franchises in sports — the soccer Reds, one of the most decorated teams in old England, and the baseball Red Sox, the oldest pro team in New England.

They have a lot in common.

Both have red uniforms — in fact, Liverpool players also wear red socks — and both have a proud heritage that includes championships and long periods of agonizing failure.

Serious financial issues have to be settled to conclude the long and bitter boardroom battle over the club.

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The Red Sox owners' offer is only likely to cover the debts and bank charges stemming from the leveraged 2007 takeover by two other Americans, Tom Hicks and George Gillet Jr. They are fighting the bid, saying it "dramatically undervalues" the club. Hicks wants to sell for about $954 million.

Rival members of the Liverpool board, which accepted the Boston bid, are set to go to court to force the sale through before the Oct. 15 deadline set by the banks to repay the club's debt.

Notes

• San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy told Barry Zito he will not start in the best-of-five NL Division Series against the wild-card Atlanta Braves. Bochy is going with Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain and Jonathan Sanchez for the first three games. After that, he will decide between Lincecum and rookie Madison Bumgarner.

• The Texas Rangers have designated pitcher Rich Harden for assignment and claimed right-hander Ryan Tucker on waivers from Florida.

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