4 recent St. Louis Cardinals whose careers went awry

jbuchheit
ST. LOUIS, MO - JUNE 22: Starter Shelby Miller #40 of the St. Louis Cardinals pitches against the Texas Rangers at Busch Stadium on June 22, 2013 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
ST. LOUIS, MO - JUNE 22: Starter Shelby Miller #40 of the St. Louis Cardinals pitches against the Texas Rangers at Busch Stadium on June 22, 2013 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
4 of 5
Next
NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 13: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT) Allen Craig #21 of the St. Louis Cardinals in action against the New York Mets at Citi Field on June 13, 2013 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. The Cardinals defeated the Mets 2-1. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY – JUNE 13: (NEW YORK DAILIES OUT) Allen Craig #21 of the St. Louis Cardinals in action against the New York Mets at Citi Field on June 13, 2013 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. The Cardinals defeated the Mets 2-1. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /

Allen Craig, OF/1B

Allen Craig appeared to be Albert Pujols’ long-term replacement at first base in 2013, but he never came close to those heights again. The Cardinals snagged Craig in the eighth round of the 2006 draft. In his first full years in the major leagues, 2011 and 2012, Craig was mostly a fourth outfielder and first baseman who developed a knack for hitting with runners in scoring position.

In 2012, Craig established himself as a strong contributor, hitting .307 with 22 home runs and a .400 average with runners in scoring position. He found another gear in 2013, when he hit .315 and had the third-highest average with runners in scoring position in the history of baseball, at .454.

In 2014, Craig had a down year with the Cardinals, hitting only .237 before being dealt to the Boston Red Sox with pitcher Joe Kelly in exchange for pitchers John Lackey and Corey Littrell. After Craig’s first game in Boston, he was placed on the disabled list with a sprained left foot. When he returned, he was not the same player: In his 29 games for the Red Sox, Craig hit .128.

In 2015, after Craig was hitting only .135, Boston assigned him to Triple-A Pawtucket. He briefly returned to Boston to hit .152 in 12 more games, and the Red Sox released him in June 2017. He signed with the San Diego Padres and was able to hit .298 at Triple-A, but he retired and took a job in the front office with the Padres the next year.

facebooktwitterreddit