Pujols wants Cards to sign Manny

SANTO DOMINGO, Dominican Republic -- Albert Pujols is encouraging the St. Louis Cardinals to sign Manny Ramirez.

The Cardinals slugger, who won his second NL MVP award in November, acknowledged the team might not have enough money to land the free-agent outfielder.

"I speak with Manny every three days and he tells me, 'Man, no one wants to sign me,'" Pujols said Thursday during a news conference. "I'm not an agent or general manager, but I can't understand how Manny has not signed."

Pujols passed along Ramirez's telephone number to St. Louis manager Tony La Russa.

"Maybe St. Louis doesn't have the money to sign him, but he could give them a discount because St. Louis is a great city that supports its players," Pujols said.

Pujols plans to play for the Dominican Republic in the upcoming World Baseball Classic. He is coming off surgery on his right elbow.

"I'll represent the Dominican Republic while I'm healthy," he said. "The only thing that can stop me is if I feel any discomfort."