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“I think it could be more of an annoyance to him than necessarily a distraction to the team,” Holiday said. “I’m sure he’ll grow tired of answering questions if he has to.”

Pitchers and catchers worked out for the first time Monday at Roger Dean Stadium. La Russa said he didn’t mention the Pujols situation when he spoke with the club.

The manager said he’d spoken with Pujols, but is staying out of the contract issue.

“I don’t give Albert advice that is unnecessary,” La Russa said. “Albert is very smart, very compassionate in everything, whether it’s his profession or his personal life. He knows how to handle himself.”


AP Sports Writers R.B. Fallstrom in St. Louis and Ron Blum in New York contributed to this report.