Oct 9, 2015; St. Louis, MO, USA; Reggie Sanders throws out the first pitch before game one of the NLDS between the Chicago Cubs and the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports
I almost didn’t include Reggie on this list. He did only play two season in St. Louis, but was a large part of those two teams’ in 2004 and 2005. He was brought in during the 2003 offseason to play RF/LF, and was on his seventh team in seven years. In his first season, (which was the only full season he played) he finished the year with a slash of .260/.315/.482 with 52 extra-base hits (27 doubles, 22 homers, and 3 triples) and 67 RBI.
Playing in only 93 games the next season Sanders upped his game a bit, going .271/.340/.546 with a very good OPS of .887, finishing with one less homer than the season before (21) in over 150 less at-bats.
These aren’t jump off the page MVP numbers, but that’s not what was needed out of him on a team as loaded as the 04-05 teams were. He was hitting in a lineup with Albert Pujols, Jim Edmonds, Scott Rolen, and Larry Walker (2004). He didn’t need to be that MVP guy, as the team had the MV3 (still perplexes me how this team didn’t win the title).
Sanders also had pretty good postseason numbers with the Cardinals as he did contribute two very good NLDS performances in 04/05, going .286 with a homer and a stolen base in 04 and .333 with a homer, two doubles, and ten RBI in the 05 NLDS against the Padres. It was the 04 WS and 05 NLCS where his bat went to die unfortunately when the Cards needed it most.
All in all, one of the better signings in Cardinals’ history.
Next: Chris Carpenter