From Comcast SportsNetSAN DIEGO (AP) -- Lance Berkman is scheduled for season-ending surgery on his troublesome right knee Tuesday, leaving the St. Louis Cardinals without a dangerous bat as they try to secure a playoff spot.Cardinals manager Mike Matheny announced the news Monday before his team played the San Diego Padres. The defending World Series champions began the night with a 1-game lead over the Los Angeles Dodgers in the race for the second NL wild card.Berkman, who had surgery on the same knee in May, traveled to Houston on Monday to meet with the medical team that performed the first operation. The same group of doctors will perform the surgery Tuesday.Berkman's knee and other physical ailments have limited the switch-hitter to 80 at-bats this season. He was hitting .263 with two homers and seven RBIs.The surgery, which will remove meniscus from Berkman's knee, will be the sixth of his career. It will be the fourth operation on his right knee, which has caused problems all season.The 36-year-old Berkman is a .296 career hitter with 360 home runs and 1,200 RBIs. He batted .301 with 31 homers and 94 RBIs last year to help the Cardinals win their championship.
The 49ers and Jimmy Garoppolo face two deadlines this offseason to reach an agreement on a long-term contract extension.
The first deadline is March 6. That is the last day on which teams can apply the franchise tag for the 2018 season. If Garoppolo remains unsigned on March 6, the 49ers will tag him as their franchise player, which – in essence – locks him in to a one-year deal worth $23.3 million, former NFL agent Joel Corry estimates.
The second deadline is July 16. That is the deadline for any club that designates a franchise player to reach a multi-year deal. After that date, the player may sign only a one-year deal until after the club’s final regular-season game.
The 49ers and Garoppolo’s agent, Don Yee, have kept conversations and negotiations private. And that is the way the 49ers plan to conduct business this offseason.
“One thing that we really believe is that those things should take place between us and his representatives and not occur and transpire in the public,” 49ers general manager John Lynch said. “That’s the way we’re going to treat that. You have our assurances, and the fans do, that we’d like nothing more than to make him a Niner for a long, long time.”
Two seasons of one-year franchise tags would provide Garoppolo with approximately $51 million. (Garoppolo made $3.5 million total in his first four NFL seasons.)
Garoppolo could also decide to play a season on a one-year deal in hopes of increasing his value far beyond what he would be likely to warrant now – after just seven NFL starts in four seasons. Because if he establishes himself as a top quarterback next season with the 49ers, any deal he signed this offseason would be considered a bargain for the team.
“That’s the nature of the beast with the quarterback market,” Corry said on the 49ers Insider Podcast. “If you sign a long-term deal, today’s deal is outdated tomorrow.
Detroit quarterback Matthew Stafford is the highest-paid player in the NFL with a deal that averages $27 million a season.
"He won’t be by the time the 2018 regular season rolls around," said Corry, whose work can be found at CBS Sports.
Corry points out that Stafford's agent, Tom Condon, also represents Atlanta quarterback Matt Ryan, who is scheduled to enter the final year of his contract.
"That’s Ryan’s floor," Corry said of Stafford's contract. "(Green Bay's) Aaron Rodgers is probably going to get a new deal. He’ll trump everybody. And if (Kirk) Cousins signs a long-term deal, he’ll be above Stafford, as well.”
Corry said he expects Garoppolo to sign a contract similar to the five-year, $125 million deal the Raiders worked out with quarterback Derek Carr last offseason.
"I think it’s going to be something close to that Derek Carr neighborhood," Corry said. "Maybe a shade under, but I think it’ll be in that general vicinity.”
Jack Del Rio may not be out of work very long.
Fired moments after the Raiders lost their season finale to the Chargers on Dec. 31, Del Rio is "leading candidate" to become the defensive coordinator for the New York Giants, according to ESPN.
Del Rio joining the Giants is contigent on Vikings offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur being hired as New York's new head coach. According to ESPN, the Giants are planning a second interview with Shurmur this week.
In three seasons with the Raiders, Del Rio compiled a 25-23 record. After a 12-4 record and a playoff appearence in 2016, the Raiders finished with a disappointing 6-10 record this past season.
Del Rio is still owed a considerable amount of money by the Raiders through the 2020 season, a number in the range of $15 million.
Del Rio broke the news of his own firing, informing the media after the loss to the Chargers.
"Spoke with Mark Davis after the game and Mark let me know that he's not going to be bringing me back. He told me he loved me and appreciated all that I did to get this program going in the right direction but that he felt the need to change. I told him I appreciated the opportunity he gave me and I mean that. Very grateful. My childhood team. But it's a results based business, I understand that.," Del Rio said on Dec. 31.
A week later, the Raiders hired Jon Gruden to be their new head coach.