With the Major League Baseball postseason now underway, I thought I would celebrate each of the franchises and their storied pasts by selecting an All-Time Team for every club.
The teams consist of one player per infield position (1B, 2B, SS, 3B, C), three outfielders, three starting pitchers, and two relief pitchers. Each American League squad also consists of a designated hitter.
So without further ado, here is part 21 of a 30-part series documenting each franchise’s all-time greats.
St. Louis Cardinals
First Base: Albert Pujols 2001-11, 2022
One of the greatest hitters of all time, Pujols was named to 10 All-Star teams while winning three NL MVP Awards during his time in St. Louis.
The 2001 NL Rookie of the Year and 2004 NLCS MVP, Pujols led the NL in home runs twice while also leading the league in hits, RBI, and batting average once each.
A two-time recipient of the NL Hank Aaron Award and six-time Silver Slugger winner, Pujols was also a stud on the defensive side, winning two Gold Gloves and five Fielding Bibles.
Pujols is a member of the 3,000 hits club (3,384) and finished his career second all-time in RBI (2,218) and fourth in home runs (703).
While he was great individually, Pujols also had a major impact on winning. During his 12 seasons, the Cardinals reached the playoffs eight times, winning three NL pennants and a pair of World Series championships in 2006 and 2011.
Second Base: Rogers Hornsby 1915-26, 1933
A two-time Triple Crown winner and 1925 NL MVP, Hornsby became one of the greatest second basemen in league history while leading the Cardinals to their first World Series title in 1926.
Hornsby won six batting titles during his St. Louis tenure, also leading the NL in RBI four times and home runs twice.
A member of the MLB All-Century and All-Time Teams, Hornsby is a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame whose .358 career batting average ranks third all-time.
Shortstop: Ozzie Smith 1982-96
A 14-time All-Star in 15 seasons, Smith was named MVP of the 1985 NLCS while helping the Cardinals win four division titles, three NL pennants, and the 1982 World Series.
A 1987 Silver Slugger recipient, Smith is one of the all-time great defensive shortstops, taking home 11 Gold Gloves in a row from 1982-92.
Inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 2002, Smith’s No. 1 jersey is retired by St. Louis, where he is also a member of the Cardinals Hall of Fame.
Third Base: Ken Boyer 1955-65
An 11-time All-Star and five-time Gold Glove recipient, Boyer’s No. 14 jersey is retired by St. Louis, where he is also a member of the Cardinals Hall of Fame.
Leading the NL in RBI while winning NL MVP in 1964, Boyer guided the Cardinals to both the NL pennant and World Series championship during a career-best season.
Catcher: Yadier Molina 2004-22
Playing his entire 19-season career in St. Louis, Molina became one of the greatest defensive catchers of all time.
Molina racked up nine Gold Gloves, four Platinum Gloves, and six Fielding Bibles during his tenure while also making 10 All-Star teams.
A 2013 Silver Slugger recipient, Molina had a major impact on winning in his career. Holding the MLB record for consecutive playoff starts (83), “Yadi” appeared in the postseason 13 times, winning four NL pennants and two World Series championships.
Outfield: Lou Brock 1964-79
A six-time All-Star who led the NL in stolen bases eight times, Brock was well known for his speed and hitting ability.
Ranking second all-time in stolen bases (938) and a member of the 3,000 hits club (3,023), Brock helped the Cardinals win three NL pennants and a pair of World Series titles.
After his career, Brock was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame and had his No. 20 retired in St. Louis.
Outfield: Stan Musial 1941-44, ’46-63
Making 24 All-Star teams while winning seven NL batting titles, Musial is one of baseball’s greatest-ever players that helped St. Louis win four NL pennants and three World Series championships.
A three-time NL MVP who led the league in RBI twice, “Stan the Man” is a member of the 3,000 hits club (3,630) and ranks eighth all-time in RBI (1,951)
Once his career concluded, Musial’s No. 6 was retired by the Cardinals and he was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame and named to the MLB All-Century Team.
Outfield: Enos Slaughter 1938-42, ’46-53
Named to 10 All-Star teams during his stint with the Cardinals, Slaughter guided the team to World Series titles during the 1942 and 1946 seasons.
The 1946 NL RBI leader was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1985 and had his No. 9 retired by St. Louis.
Starting pitcher: Dizzy Dean 1930, ’32-37
One of the best pitchers of his era, Dean made four All-Star teams and led MLB in wins twice before injuries shortened his career.
Dean led the majors in strikeouts four straight times from 1932-35 and was named the NL MVP in 1934, a season in which he won 30 games and the Cardinals won the World Series.
Following his career, Dean’s No. 17 was retired by St. Louis and he was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1953.
Starting pitcher: Bob Gibson 1959-75
One of the greatest pitchers of his generation, Gibson was named to nine All-Star teams while leading the league in wins, ERA, and strikeouts once each.
The 1968 NL MVP and two-time NL Cy Young Award winner, Gibson racked up an impressive nine Gold Gloves and over 3,000 strikeouts in his career (3,117).
An MVP of two World Series (1964, 1967), Gibson threw a no-hitter during the 1971 season and is a member of the MLB All-Century Team.
After helping the Cardinals win three NL pennants and two World Series titles during his 17 seasons, Gibson’s No. 45 was retired by the team and he was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Starting pitcher: Adam Wainwright 2005-10, 2012-present
Playing his entire career in St. Louis thus far, Wainwright has been named to three All-Star teams and picked up a Silver Slugger in 2017.
Twice leading the NL in wins and winning a pair of Gold Gloves, Wainwright has been an important part of some great seasons in St. Louis.
During his tenure, the Cardinals have reached the postseason 11 times, winning eight NL Central titles and two NL pennants. Wainwright also helped St. Louis win the 2006 World Series and was also awarded a ring for the 2011 championship, despite missing the season due to injury.
Relief pitcher: Bruce Sutter 1981-84
One of the game’s best closers, Sutter led the NL in saves three times while making a pair of All-Star teams in just his four-year St. Louis tenure.
A three-time NL Rolaids Relief Man Award winner, Sutter helped the Cardinals win the 1982 World Series while becoming a member of the 300 saves club.
After his career, Sutter was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame and had his No. 42 jersey retired in St. Louis.
Relief pitcher: Jason Isringhausen 2002-08
The 2004 NL saves leader and 2005 All-Star, Isringhausen starred for seven seasons in the Cardinals bullpen.
A member of the Cardinals Hall of Fame and the 300 saves club, Isringhausen helped St. Louis win four division titles, two NL pennants, and the 2006 World Series during his time with the team.