Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports
Edgar Renteria, Shortstop
Unlike JD Drew, Edgar Renteria was not brought up by the St. Louis Cardinals, he joined the organization in 1999. His career started in1992 when the Florida Marlins signed him out of Barannquilla, Columbia. In 1996, at the age of nineteen, Renteria made his debut. In his debut season, he played 104 games hitting .309. That ended with him finishing second in the Rookie of the Year voting.
Renteria spent six years in a St. Louis Cardinals uniform, starting in 1999. Three of his five all-star appearances, all three of his Silver Slugger awards, and both of his Gold Gloves came during his time in St. Louis.
The only accolade that Renteria was not able to achieve as a Cardinal was World Series victories. He won two in his career though. One with the Marlins in 1997, and one with the San Francisco Giants in 2010. He was able to take home MVP honors for the series in 2010.
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Perhaps the biggest moment of his career, however, came in 1997 when he got the walk-off hit in the bottom of the 11th inning in Game Seven of the World Series.
When looking purely at career WAR, Renteria with a 32.1 is the best Columbian born player in history. The next closest to him is Orlando Cepeda with a 21.4 WAR. While that is a nice personal milestone for Renteria, is it enough to get him into Cooperstown?
I say yes. With a .286 career batting average and 2,327 it may seem like he doesn’t have the numbers. Remember, he retired at the age of thirty-four. That said, Renteria did perform well in the regular season and made a name for himself in October.
Taking all of that into account, he is going to need to survive for several years on the ballot before he gets the required seventy-five percent of the vote. If he does make it, Cooperstown will come calling in year nine or ten on the ballot. But, to me, his career certainly warrants the honor.
Should he get the nod to be immortalized, it is hard to say what hat he will wear. He was a World Series MVP in San Francisco, he won a World Series with his first ever team in Florida, but he spent his most successful years in St. Louis. Based solely on the fact that he was in St. Louis the longest leads me to believe he would forever want to be immortalized as a St. Louis Cardinal.
What do you think? Are there other former Cardinals who should be on a ballot? Say, Jim Edmonds? Let us know what you think by following us on Twitter and Facebook. Thanks for reading and GO CARDINALS!