My top All time Cardinals 25 man roster
In honor of the 2011 St. Louis Cardinals yearbook (due out in late July) which is profiling what they think the all time 25 man roster would be, we decided to do our own and see which roster you think is better, who would you add or drop off of the all time roster? Here is a look at what we think the all time roster would be and why:
- Bob Gibson- The most obvious choice for the Cardinals all time rotation he is without a doubt the greatest Cardinal pitcher of all time. Over 200 wins, 3,000 strikeouts,an MVP ,2 Cy Young awards and a very great career all with the Cardinals,Gibson is the Ace of the Cardinals all time team. No doubt.
- Dizzy Dean- A tragic end to what could have been an even greater career, Dean led the gas-house gang rotation and is one of the greatest pitchers in Cardinals history. He is the number two in the rotation because of his Hall of Fame status and that if his career wouldn’t have ended so shortly he could have had much better numbers as a Cardinal.
- Cy Young- As a member of the St. Louis Perfecto’s Cy Young was the ace of the staff. Cy Young is the MLB all times wins leader with 511, though he is also the all time losses as well. Though he was only a Cardinal for two seasons, the guy had great stuff, enough to have over 500 wins and an award named after him.
- Chris Carpenter- The current Ace of the Cardinals staff, he is the only other Cardinal pitcher other than Gibson to win the Cy Young award doing so in 2005. He was a key to the Cardinals success in the 2006 World Series championship and is nearing second place in the franchise’s all time strikeouts list. He has won almost 100 games as a Cardinal (89) and his pitching clutch allows him a spot in the all time rotation.
- Jesse Haines- Second in the all time franchise leaders behind Gibson in wins (210),6th in strikeouts(979), and 2nd in complete games(208). Haines was an innings eater and one of the greatest pitchers in franchise history, he is also a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame. Haines played 17 out of his 18 seasons with the Cardinals and he only played 1 game with another team outside of the Cardinals organization which was his first game in the big leagues with the Reds.
- Matt Morris- Even though Morris was mainly a starter in his career and with the Cardinals he didn’t quite make the all time rotation so he will be one of the long men in the all time bullpen. Morris played 8 seasons with the Cardinals winning over 100 games, and he is currently one strikeout ahead of Chris Carpenter for fourth on the Cardinals all time strikeout list with (986), he was the Ace of the Cardinals staff for many years, and was a key contributor in the,’01,’03, ’04 and ’05 post season runs.
- Bob Forsch- Like Morris,Forsch was also a starter in his career but he also didn’t make the cut for the All Time rotation. Forsch played nearly his entire career with the Cardinals(15 out of 17 seasons), he won over 150 games as a Cardinal (163), and maintained a healthy ERA with (3.67) as a member of the Cardinals. He was also a member of the 1982 World Series champion Cardinals. He was also good with the bat winning two Silver Sluggers and as a Cardinal had a career .215 AVG and hit 12 home runs while driving in 79, he also had 44 doubles as a Cardinal.
- John Tudor- Tudor is the Cardinals franchise leader in ERA with 2.51 and was a key member to the mid 1980′s Cardinals teams playing from ’85 to 88 with the Cardinals and returning to end his career as a Cardinal in ’99. Tudor was also a starter in his career but didn’t make the cut due to only winning 62 games as a Cardinal and only playing for parts of 5 seasons. He may be one of the more talented left handed pitchers in Cardinal history.
- Adam Wainwright- Wainwright was acquired in the J.D. Drew deal that sent Drew to Atlanta for Ray King, Jason Marquis, and Wainwright. Wainwright broke in with the Cardinals in ’05 only playing in 2 games, but he made his mark in history in ’06. After an injury to Jason Isringhausen, Wainwright became the interim closer only getting 3 regular season saves, but came through huge in the post season striking out Carlos Beltran with the bases loaded in game 7 of the NLCS as one of the greatest moments in Cardinals history. After ’06 Wainwright became a starter and has became a very good one, winning 20 games last season, finishing second in the Cy Young voting behind Roy Halladay. I would choose Wainwright becuase of his experience closing and starting he is very talented and has great strike out stuff.
- Set Up-Lee Smith- Argurably the second best closer in Cardinals franchise history, Smith along with Sutter was also a member of the Chicago Cubs. Smith played 4 seasons with the Cardinals but he recorded 160 saves, leading the league in saves twice as a Cardinal and is second in franchise history in saves behind Jason Isringhausen. His expertise at closing and coming in the clutch makes him the set up man in my all time Cardinals roster.
- Closer- Bruce Sutter- A Hall of Fame pitcher for the Cardinals, Sutter is the greatest closer in Cardinals history, even though he is ranked 4th among Cardinals saves leaders with 127 saves. Sutter is the most famous and intimidating of the Cardinals closers and I would want to see him closing games out for the All time Cardinals team, wouldn’t you?
- RF- Lou Brock- Brock is one of the greatest outfielders in the history of the game and is second All Time in stolen bases with 938,(888 as a Cardinal)behind only Rickie Henderson who broke Brock’s record. Brock also had over 3,000 career hits making him a perfect choice for a leadoff hitter, contact and speed. He has a Cardinal career average of .297, with 2,713 of his hits as a member of the Cardinals. He started his career with the Cubs, and was a part of the greatest trade in Cardinals history.
- 2B- Rogers Hornsby- Arguably the greatest second base man of all time, Hornsby is an obvious choice. He led the Cardinals to their first ever World Series Championship in 1926. Hornsby played 13 seasons with the Cardinals, and 5 with the Browns, so Hornsby was very well known in St. Louis. The “Rajah” hit over .400 three times as a Cardinal and was an MVP in 1926 with the Cardinals. He led the league in hits 4 times, doubles four times, triples twice, home runs twice, RBI’s four times, and was a 6 time batting champ as a Cardinal. His ability to hit for contact and power is why he is batting in the two hole in front of you know who.
- 1B- Albert Pujols- Pujols may be the greatest first baseman in the game by the time it is all said and done, whether he ends his career as a Cardinal or not, he will be a Hall of Famer and he will go in as a Cardinal. He has over 400 home runs(428), 1,000 RBI;s(1,285), and is 13 hits away from 2,000. He has won 3 MVP’s, 2 Gold Gloves,6 Silver Sluggers,and has been an All Star nine times,and was a member of the 2006 World Series championship. He is an obvious choice to be the starting first base man and batting third in the all time Cardinal lineup.
- LF- Stan Musial- “The Man” is without a doubt the greatest player in Cardinals history and is one of the greatest to ever play the game. He played his entire 22 seasons with the Cardinals, and missed a full year serving for the US Military. He is the Cardinals franchise leader in hits(3,630),Runs(1,949), Doubles(725), Triples(177),Home Runs(475),RBI’s(1,951), and many others categories. With him batting fourth in the all time list he can drive in more runs and provide protection for Albert.
- CF- Jim Edmonds- Edmonds is the greatest center fielder in Cardinals history, and is among the greatest defensive center fielders in the history of the game. Edmonds won 6 Gold Gloves as a Cardinal, a Silver Slugger and was a member of the ’06 World Series championship team. Edmonds is one of the most clutch hitters in franchise history and also had the bat to match the glove. Edmonds hit 241 home runs and drove in 713 in his 8 years with the Cardinals. His bat, glove, and clutch hitting is why he is batting fifth in the all time lineup.
- 3B- Ken Boyer- The only member of retired numbers who is not in the Hall of Fame. The former Cardinal Captain was a key part of the ’61 and ’64 World Series championship teams. He played 15 seasons with the Cardinals racking up 1,855 hits, 255 home runs,and 1,001 RBI’s. He won 6 Gold Gloves and also won the MVP in 1964 leading the league in RBI’s, and leading the Cardinals to a Championship. He is the best choice for a third baseman and is a great hitter to back up the glove.
- C- Ted Simmons- The greatest offensive catcher in Cardinal history, Simmons played 13 seasons for the Cardinals during the pitiful seventies he was about the only highlight during a rough decade in Cardinal baseball. Simmons had 1,704 hits, 929 RBI’s, 332 doubles,and had a .298 average as a Cardinal. He would eventually face his former team in the 1982 World Series as a member of the Milwaukee Brewers. His bat is exactly why he is batting seventh in the all time lineup, and the reason he is starting at catcher.
- SS- Ozzie Smith- Is there any other choice other than the Wizard? Ozzie is the greatest defensive short stop in the history of the game. Though he isn’t the greatest with the bat, Ozzie had plenty of huge hits including one of the biggest in Cardinals history in 1985. Smith won one Silver Slugger and 11 Gold Gloves as a Cardinal 13 overall. Smith collected 1,944 hits and racked up 433 stolen bases in his 15 year Cardinal Career. His glove is enough to make him the starting short stop in the All time Cardinal lineup, but his speed and clutch hitting is an added bonus.
- 1B-Mark McGwire- Even though his career is now tainted with steroid use, McGwire is still among the greatest home run hitters in the history of the game, and is one of the greatest first baseman as well. He has 220 home runs as a Cardinal, and made history breaking Roger Maris’s single season home run record with 62 home runs and ending the year with 70. He also led the league in homers the following year with 65. If it were not for El Hombre in the lineup he would be the starting first baseman.
- 2B-Frankie Frisch- The second greatest second baseman in Cardinal history, Frisch was traded to the Cardinals for Rogers Hornsby. Frisch played 11 seasons as a Cardinal during his 19 year career. He led the team to a World Series championship in 1931 winning the MVP and was also a key piece to the 1934 World Series champion team as well. He had over 1,500 hits and batted over .300 as a Cardinal. He is an obvious choice to be the back up infielder on the team.
- C-Yadier Molina- The greatest defensive catcher in franchise history and could be the among the greatest all time when his career is all said and done. Molina came up as Mike Matheney’s back up in 2004, and became the youngest catcher to catch in a World Series. He has won 3 consecutive Gold Gloves and is a 3 time All Star. His home run in game 7 of the 2006 NLCS is one of the greatest moments in Cardinals history, if his bat were a bit better he would be the starting catcher in my all time lineup.
- OF-Joe Medwick- Medwick was a member of the gashouse gang and one of the greatest outfielders in Cardinal history, but with Brock and Musial as obvious choices for the corner positions Medwick rests on the bench. Medwick played 11 seasons with the Caridnals and was a member of the 1934 World Series Champions. He is the last National League player to win the Triple Crown leading in hits, home runs, and RBI’s in 1937 easily winning an MVP. During his Cardinal career Medwick had a .335 AVG,1,590 hits, 152 home runs, and drove in 923. Not a bad fourth outfielder.
- OF- Curt Flood- One of the true greats in Cardinals history Flood played 12 seasons with the Cardinals. He won 6 consecutive Gold Gloves as a Cardinal and was a member of the ’61, ’64, and ’67 World Series Champions. As a Cardinal, Flood had a .294 AVG, with 1,853 hits,85 home runs, and 636 RBI’s. With an abundance of outfielders on the All time Roster he rests on the bench.
- OF- Willie McGee- McGee is the perfect balance of fielding,contact and speed. McGee won the MVP in 1985 in the year the Cardinals would come in second in the World Series. McGee was a member of the 1982 World Series which was also his rookie year. McGee played 13 seasons with the Cardinals and had great success hitting .294 with 1,683, 63 home runs, driving in 678, and stealing 301 bases. McGee is a fan favorite and his great skills set makes him a perfect fit for the last roster spot.