ST. LOUIS -- Lance Berkman would be perfectly happy to play a second year in St. Louis.

The veteran outfielder told reporters on Wednesday that he intends to play in 2012, and that he'd love for it to be with the Cardinals.

"I'm sure I'll play next year somewhere," he said. "Hopefully it will be here, but part of that is not up to me.

"This is a great group of guys. I think it has a lot of potential. Even if things don't go like we want them to this year, I still feel like this is not a team that is rebuilding. It's not a team that's very far away from being right where it needs to be."

Asked if he would be open to advances from the club about a deal for next season, Berkman didn't hesitate.

"Oh yeah, absolutely," he said. "This would be my first choice."