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Sherriff's mother waiting on her son's debut

MLB.com

ST. LOUIS --- Hands clenched, eyes on the bullpen.

Renee Sherriff has been waiting seven years for this moment. Among the 38,726 people sitting in Busch Stadium on Thursday night, there was a contingent of two that hoped and prayed that Cardinals' rookie reliever Ryan Sherriff will finally get the opportunity to make his Major League debut.

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ST. LOUIS --- Hands clenched, eyes on the bullpen.

Renee Sherriff has been waiting seven years for this moment. Among the 38,726 people sitting in Busch Stadium on Thursday night, there was a contingent of two that hoped and prayed that Cardinals' rookie reliever Ryan Sherriff will finally get the opportunity to make his Major League debut.

View Full Game Coverage

While it doesn't happen during the Cardinals 4-3 loss to the Padres, Renee Sherriff will keep returning in anticipation of that moment.

Ryan Sherriff's contract was purchased from Triple-A Memphis on Wednesday, the same day that the Cardinals placed closer Trevor Rosenthal on the 60-day disabled list in anticipation of Tommy John surgery. With a bullpen much in need of relief, Sherriff is hoping to make an impact in his Major League debut.

"I've envisioned [that moment]," the left-hander said when asked about making his first appearance. "Just do what I always do. Tell my dad that I love him, and go ahead and attack."

Sheriff's father, Larry, passed away in 2012 from complications of multiple myeloma. Ryan Sherriff's mother and girlfriend, Kim, traveled to St. Louis to watch his first nights in the Major Leagues this week.

It took a bit of effort, however, to get the news to Renee that her son had been called up by the Cardinals. She didn't hear her phone ring when multiple family members and friends tried to get in touch with her, it was left to a neighbor to come running over to her house to give her the news.

"Your son made it to the Major Leagues,'' the neighbor shared with Renee.

What followed was an emotional conversation with her son. She then hustled to put together plans to get to St. Louis in time. Renee's boss made all the travel arrangements for both her and Kim to make it in time from Culver City, Calif.

"I'm so nervous, I can't even tell you," Renee said. "It's like, get some runs up there so in case anything happens ... you don't want to see your kid give up a run, you don't want to see him walk anybody."

Sheriff put on an impressive performance in Spring Training this year which most likely helped in the Cardinals' decision to give the 27-year-old a chance to show what he can do.

"Spring Training helped me a lot. I think it was a big confidence booster for me," Ryan said. "I stayed with the mentality of go out there and attack, don't pitch with fear. That's what I've been doing all year."

With Triple-A Memphis this season, Sheriff made 48 relief appearances and had a 3.19 ERA. He had six saves and a 5-1 record.

Renee and Kim will continue to anxiously watch the Cardinals play, waiting as long as necessary. They have plans to most likely stay through the homestand.

"This has been unbelievable. It touches my heart. He needs to be here. He should have been here before," Renee said. "He's been working so hard for so long and he's passionate about this game. He really is, he loves it. And he's good at what he does."

Alaina Getzenberg is a reporter for MLB.com based in St. Louis

St. Louis Cardinals, Ryan Sherriff