By Tim Polzer
March 08, 2013

The St. Louis Cardinals have agreed with Allen Craig on a five-year contract with a club option in 2018, the team announced.

The first baseman/outfielder, who made his Major League Baseball debut in 2010, began the 2012 season as the team's stop-gap after longtime first baseman Albert Pujols signed with the Angels, but Craig eventually established himself as the Cardinals' everyday first baseman.

Off-season knee surgery and an early hamstring injury limited Craig to 116 games in 2012, but his .307 average ranked second among first basemen and 15th best in the majors. He also produced 22 homers, 92 RBI, .354 OBP, .522 SLG and .876 OPS.

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