Well, I'm still in celebration mode, are you? You fans living in the St. Louis area should consider yourselves fortunate, I'd love to be watching a parade today. With this being Larry's blog and all, I'd feel pretty goofy trying to break down all the big happenings of the last few days, especially being he can do a much better job of it then I can. But what I would like to do is revel in the moment here a bit, and perhaps have some community heart-felt thanks for the 2006 Champion St. Louis Cardinals, and to the people who've made this so enjoyable. I'll kick this thing off-
- I'd first like to thank someone who's taken a lot of heat this recent year or so, from present company included. I'd like to offer thanks to Chairman Bill DeWitt. Since DeWitt bought the team, despite what many have said, he's been willing to spend the money to keep the marquee players that Jocketty has swung in trades. And for that matter, I'd like to thank him for hiring Jocketty and LaRussa in the first place. Sure, I suppose he has his faults, but under his watch the Cardinals have won their division 5 times, won the NL twice and now a World Series.
- I'd like to thank #10 Tony LaRussa. Will Oquendo give him the #11 for the new goal now set before him? I loved reading his comments at the official site, that he's ready for spring training to start today. I personally thought he'd just say "mission accomplished" and hang'em up, but apparently he's not thinking that at all. He's endured a lot of criticism since taking over as manager, and has in many ways lived under the shadow of some legends, but the man is just 64 wins away from being the winningest manager in Cardinal history. His rep for being a bit of a tight-wad in the postseason may now be shed. We saw a different side of LaRussa this October, and I can't be happier for him. Thanks, Tony.
- I'd like to thank Chris Duncan. Yes, he is a terrible defensive outfielder and Friday night was a dreadful display. I felt bad for Chris, maybe that's why I'm taking the time to do this. I hope he can put it past him, because his suprising offensive performance was worth about 4 wins or so this season, enough to keep the Astros away.
- And I know there's already a diary in thanks to Larry Borowsky, but I'd also like take this oppurtunity to thank him too. It's hard work dishing out full course meals on a daily basis, and Larry makes it seem so easy. Also, thanks to all the terrific Card bloggers out there, y'all know who you are.
Okay, well the music has started playing so I have to get off the stage here, but on a serious note: I'd like to thank my mom, a lady who raised me right, a lady who taught me to root for the Cardinals. We moved to St. Louis from Michigan July 3rd, 1987. She grew up listening to the Tigers with her dad, and when we moved she latched onto the Cardinals. Growing up in my house, the Cardinals were on all summer long. And when I moved away, Mom and I would talk Cardinals in about every phone call home. She passed at the age of 52 this May, right before the club started to go downhill. The last day I spent with her in person was at Busch II, Memorial weekend of '05. I wish we could've shared this together, and I'm sure there are many of you who have memories of loved ones you lost and wish you could've shared this with them as well. I know baseball is just a game, but it's times like these that are great to be alive. Cardinal baseball is something we can cherish as a common bond that we have with our family, friends, and even crazy people we meet in cyberspace. And we can remember those who we've lost, and celebrate with them that somewhere, they too are now smiling down on this team and these great fans.
There's so many others to thank, Aaron Miles and his clutch hit against Brad Lidge, Jeff Weaver for pitching his butt off Friday night, Adam Wainwright for his hammer curveball, freakish long arms and huge smile. and thanks to Yadi..wow buddy. Um, let's see there's MVPujols, Cy Carp....and thanks go to Mike Shannon, and back to back champion radio announcer John Rooney, Josh the bat...um, boy, and the list goes on. That's where you all come in. Feel free to drop your thanks to who you feel helped make this 2006 season one for the ages, be it player, coach, peanut vendor or fellow playoff beard grower. Okay, the tall, sexy lady is now walking me off the stage.