The St. Louis Post-Dispatch’s Bernie Miklasz on the first of this autumn’s GM openings….that Steve Phillips won’t be considered a candidate for.

The Cardinals and general manager Walt Jocketty have “cordially and respectfully parted ways,” according to team chairman Bill DeWitt Jr.

Assistant general manager John Mozeliak has been named interim GM by DeWitt and is a candidate to succeed Jocketty on a full-time basis.

Jocketty™s contract runs through 2008 and he apparently reached terms on a financial settlement with DeWitt in a meeting Wednesday morning.

In the meeting, DeWitt informed Jocketty that the franchise was moving forward without him and thanked Jocketty for his 13 years of service.

“I think we had a little different philosophy and vision with respect to some baseball issues,” DeWitt said at the press conference.

Jocketty™s unhappiness has been an open secret at Busch Stadium and around baseball circles.

The tipping point occurred late in the 2006 season, when DeWitt promoted Jeff Luhnow to the position of Vice President of Amateur Scouting and Player Development.

The move, in effect, put Luhnow in an elevated position of authority and displaced Jocketty™s lieutenants from running the draft and supervising the farm system. This left Jocketty embittered, and had a polarizing, divisive effect on the organization.

7 playoff appearances, two NL championships and one improbable World Series victory in 13 years apparently weren’t good enough to paper over the bad relationships in the Cardinals front office. I’d offer to pay for a round of drinks at Mike Shannon’s tonight, but my lawyer has advised against it.