The reason is because Skip Schumaker was on the of the few athletes who truly embody the game. Schumaker broke into the big leagues as an outfielder and started in CF for a 2 seasons in St. Louis. Prior to the 2009 season, the appearance of Colby Rasmus (the heir apparent in CF) and Holiday and Ludwig in the corner outfield spots looked to limit Schumakers playing time. Tony LaRussa (who was short a 2B) approached schumaker about a move to 2B, which Schumaker had never played. Schumaker struggled in his first year at the position but was the regular at the position up until this past season. Schumaker saw dwindling playing time this season due to 2 younger players taking a majority of the time at 2B. Schumaker was a career .280 hitter with the Cards, but that is not what he will be remembered for.
Skip was a hustle guy. He was not the biggest, strongest, fastest, or more highly touted guy that came through the organization. He just went out there everyday and played. He was a leader in the club house... even when he was losing playing time. He was a team guy... a glue guy. He was a guy that was likely to have a dirty jersey at the end of every game. He battled, everyday. He drove in the lone run in Chris Carpenters magical shutout of the Phillies in the 2011 NLDS game 5... the hit came on the 11th pitch from Halladay. He played baseball the Cardinal Way... full of heart and hustle. He honored the tradition and history of the Birds on the Bat. I know the trade was made, in part, the give Schumaker a new start and an opportunity for more playing time, but I will truly miss seeing him on the diamond. He was one of my favorite players from the time he came up, up until he was traded late last week. So I will end this the only way I see fit.
Thank you Skip... I really enjoyed watching you play, and I wish you the best in Dodger blue.
T.O. Signing out