Cards' Holliday happy to have Peralta as teammate

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 21, 2014 at 2:36 am •  Published: January 21, 2014

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Matt Holliday has been an outspoken critic of players who have used performance-enhancing drugs.

When it comes to Jhonny Peralta, his new St. Louis Cardinals teammate, he is willing to forgive and forget.

The Cardinals' new shortstop was suspended last summer as part of Major League Baseball's investigation into the Biogenesis clinic. Peralta served a 50-game suspension for using performance-enhancing drugs and returned to the Tigers at the end of the regular season before signing a $53 million, four-year contract with St. Louis in November.

"I am against PEDs and always will be," Holliday said Monday at the Cardinals' winter fan festival. "But I also am a forgiving person and he served his suspension. That's the rules of the game. I'm happy to have him as a teammate."

St. Louis wanted an offensive upgrade over Pete Kozma at shortstop and they went with Peralta, who hit .303 with 30 doubles, 11 home runs and 55 RBIs in 107 games with the Tigers. He hit .352 against left-handers.

General manager John Mozeliak knew there would be some criticism of Peralta's signing.

Mozeliak, who wanted to add a shortstop without trading pitching, consulted with Holliday before making the transaction. Holliday endorsed the move despite his history of criticizing PED users.

Holliday wasn't comfortable discussing details of his conversation with Mozeliak.

"Mo just called and said this is what we're going to do," he said. "It's not like he asked me if it was OK."

To show he was willing to let bygones be bygones, Holliday texted Peralta to welcome him to the club. As far as he is concerned, Peralta's PED use is in the past. Holliday doesn't think Peralta owes any more explanations.

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