Friday, January 29, 2010

my picks.... team of the 00s

Okay, back to blogging with the big boys, and I've decided to jump back in with this project.

UCB proudly presents The Cardinals TEAM of the DECADE.

Of course, there aren't too many options, considering the amount of talent we've had the last 10 years, but I intend to make it as interesting as possible.

Now, where to begin....

Ah, yes, how about with the player of the decade. Albert Pujols at first base. The Best Player in Baseball. (I really believe that he could play any position with as much success as anyone who's ever played it, and if you doubt that, just challenge him and see what happens.)
The. Best. Player. in. Baseball.

Jim Edmonds in center field. Again, there's no argument that he's the best Cardinals CF of the decade because there's no argument that he's the best Major League CF of the decade. (On a side note, this is just despicable.)

Scott Rolen at third. He may not be my favorite of all-time, but I still must give him a lot of credit for playing as well as he does. And who can argue with all those gold gloves? (Does it make me a bad person that I laughed when this happened? After I found out he was okay, of course.)

Here's where it gets harder.

Catcher: I'm going with Yadier Molina. If you told me Matheny was "technically" better, I might shrug and admit that he probably taught Molina everything he knows, but you could never convince me that anyone outplays or outworks our Yadi. He exemplifies what catching ought to be. Take note, all you catchers.

Left field: If you've read here before, you know whose name I want to put in this spot, but I'll resist because deep down I know that there are better fielders at that position. Screw it, Chris Duncan. Outfield blunders aside, this guy contributed a lot with his bat. Maybe he was easy for some to make fun of, and maybe he had a lot to learn, but he wasn't a slacker and he loved the team. Oh, and he has a titanium disc, people.

Right field: Ryan Ludwick. The man is a force to be reckoned with, both at the plate and in the field, and it makes me shake my head every year the front office doesn't offer him the moon. His problem is that he just does his job. He's not flashy or spoiled or loud. He comes to the park, takes practice, plays the game, and lets everyone else soak up the attention. But you can always count on him.

Second base: Skip Schumaker. The point is to pick a team, using players from the entire decade, that you would like to see on the field and could stand up against anybody, right? Schu is the guy I want at second. Maybe it's an emotional choice, but there's nothing wrong with sentimental value.

Shortstop: Edgar RenterĂ­a. His resume with the Cardinals reads pretty nicely: AS, GG, SS, and MVP votes. Of course, given the revolving door of middle infielders we've had lately, you have to like the fact that he was around long enough to earn some tenure, even as funny looking as he is.
(Brendan Ryan is a close second, just because he is so much fun to watch. I think I'll make him my bench player.)

Starter: Chris Carpenter. Not only is he one of the best pitchers in the game, but he's one of the best pitchers in the game who had TJ surgery, came back, and contended for the Cy Young. He is the decade.

Reliever: Jason Isringhausen. My feelings about Izzy are no secret. He gave every ounce of himself for this team, even when things were bad and "Cardinals fans" were booing him in his own house. Plus, he holds the team all-time saves record, or something like that. I don't want to talk about it anymore.

Manager: I would pick Tony LaRussa even if he weren't the only choice.

Well, that wasn't too hard, or probably too interesting. Be sure to check out the rest of the bloggers' choices for team of the decade at the UCB site.

19 days!

I can smell Spring Training!