The St. Louis Cardinals are playing their final regular season game at home on Sunday. It just would not be the same without a pair of legends in the lineup.
Naturally, the Cardinals took care of that. Albert Pujols and Yadier Molina are getting the start in that final game, getting to soak in the adulation of the fans one last time.
St. Louis Cardinals give nod to Albert Pujols, Yadier Molina
The Cardinals also made certain that those players are in familiar spots. Pujols is in the third spot in the lineup at first base, positions he was a fixture at for a decade. Molina is in his familiar spot behind the plate, batting fifth. Having Wainwright on the mound for this start completes the circle and makes it perfect.
This is exactly how Sunday’s game should be. The Cardinals have already clinched their place in the postseason, locked in to the third seed in the National League. Their opponents on Sunday, the Pirates, have seemingly been eliminated from postseason contention since the calendar flipped to May. It does not matter at all in the standings.
The Cardinals are also a team that is very cognisant of its history. Pujols was brought back not just because he could do damage against lefties, but because he is a Cardinals legend. Molina and Wainwright may have entered free agency, but they were never going to leave. That legacy is important to the organization.
And that means giving those legends another day in the sun. Pujols will be hitting third and playing first base. Molina is behind the plate batting fifth. It is a moment to relieve their glory days and, at the same time, give the legends the regular season sendoff they deserve.
The St. Louis Cardinals are giving Albert Pujols and Yadier Molina one last day in the sun. It is a perfect sendoff for a pair of franchise legends.