Former Gold Glover reflects on time with Cardinals while showing off hardware
ST. LOUIS -- Jim Edmonds has been retired as a player since 2010 and last appeared in a St. Louis uniform in '07, but he's still a regular presence around the Cardinals and has been very much a part of the club's postseason run.
Edmonds has watched the Cards' playoff games from the seats at Busch Stadium and popped in to congratulate friends when they clinched the pennant. On Saturday, he participated in the World Series Trophy Tour, presented by T-Mobile, which gave fans a chance to see the trophy up close and personal before it's awarded to one of the two World Series teams.
"[It's great] to let some people see the World Series trophy that don't normally get to see it," Edmonds said. "I don't normally get to see it."
On Friday, another Cardinals World Series hero -- 2006 Fall Classic MVP David Eckstein -- appeared at another area T-Mobile store to show off the trophy and sign autographs for fans.
The tour marks the first time Major League Baseball has taken the trophy to fan events throughout the entire postseason and World Series. Leading up to the World Series, the tour included appearances with four-time World Series champion Jack Morris, 1986 New York Mets World Series champion and TBS analyst Ron Darling, 1981 Los Angeles Dodgers World Series champion Steve Garvey, plus celebrity fans including actor James Caan from ABC's "Back in the Game" and Sofia Vergara and Ed O'Neill from ABC's "Modern Family."
During his appearance, Edmonds, an eight-time Gold Glove Award winner who played for the Cardinals from 2000-07, spoke glowingly of the Cards' winning ways and the feeling of responsibility a player has to win a championship for the city.
"The tradition -- it just makes you want to go out there and play," Edmonds said. "You play not only for yourself, which you did when you were a young kid, but you [play for] the team. It's a team concept here, organizational concept, and then you feel the pressure of the city, to win for the city. So it changes the way you play the game, it makes you more team and goal-oriented. This group of people that they have in this city and in the organization makes you better day in and day out."
Edmonds appeared in six postseasons with the Cardinals, reaching the World Series in '04 and winning it in '06. The Cards were swept by the Red Sox in '04 but beat the Tigers in five games two years later. Both experiences, Edmonds said, "went really fast."
"It was nice," Edmonds said, of winning in '06. "I didn't really know what to expect. The whole thing was bizarre ... the big parties and just the city relishing it. And they're still going. They've been back to the World Series in 2011 and one more time now. It's been fun."
Edmonds predicted a "great series" this time around between the Red Sox and Cardinals, and he hopes his former team can have a happier ending this time than nine years ago.
"Hopefully, this year, a little revenge," Edmonds said.