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Reggie Sanders: Seventh heaven?

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  • Reggie Sanders: Seventh heaven?

    Someone needs to sponsor this guy.

    Sanders: Seventh heaven?
    By Joe Strauss
    Of the Post-Dispatch
    02/29/2004

    JUPITER, Fla. - A passer-by recently asked Jeff Suppan for his thoughts on Reggie Sanders, his teammate last season with the Pittsburgh Pirates and again this year with the Cardinals.

    "Let me guess. Something about seven teams in seven years?" Suppan asked. "What else could it be?"

    The Cardinals' new right fielder is to the travel bag what Mark McGwire was to the tape-measure home run and Martha Stewart is to the term domestic diva. At 36, Sanders is the go-to guy for power as well as inside info on the restaurants locals prefer on the road. Cincinnati, San Diego, Atlanta, Phoenix, San Francisco and Pittsburgh: Sanders has done them all while playing in every NL division. The Cardinals offer him the chance to play in his fourth time zone in four seasons. Broadcasting beckons many after their playing days are done; Sanders could open a travel agency.

    "It's funny how it's happened," Sanders said Saturday at Roger Dean Stadium. "You come to realize it's part of the business and eventually you get used to it. You take the positives from everything. But it's toughest on your family."

    The league according to Reggie:

    Best city (aside from home): San Diego.

    Best ballpark: PNC Park, Pittsburgh.

    Best experience: Winning the World Series with the Arizona Diamondbacks, 2001.

    Worst experience: An injury-filled 2000 with the Atlanta Braves.

    Sanders has played 1,437 games for seven teams in the senior circuit but never served time in the American League. He has driven in 90 runs for four teams, including three in the last three seasons. Sanders reached the postseason with four teams from 1999 to 2002 before missing last season with the fourth-place Pittsburgh Pirates. Sanders' bio says he lives in Scottsdale, Ariz., but his front door is a turnstile, his best friend the mover.

    "I've been able to take something positive from each place," Sanders said. "I've been fortunate to be in the playoffs a number of years. In San Francisco, I played with Barry (Bonds) and was able to be around Mays and McCovey. With Pittsburgh, I think I was able to help some of their younger players still learning the game. In Arizona, we won a World Series. There's been a lot to enjoy."

    Sanders still calls himself "very fortunate ... very fortunate" because of how he has been embraced wherever he has landed.

    "I've always been easily received," said Sanders. "I think that people know my personality. They know I'm not a jerk. It's always an easy transition. I have an upbeat personality. I'm not going to sit around thinking, 'I should have gotten more money' or 'this should have happened.' I don't have an attitude. This is what I signed. I live with it and move on."

    What would a player be worth if he averaged 29 home runs and 87 RBIs the past three seasons, managed as many extra-base hits as Sammy Sosa in 2003 and was known as one of the game's good guys? The Cardinals answered with $6 million over two seasons.

    For a player in his seventh different camp in seven seasons, Sanders could say it's about time a multi-year commitment came his way.

    "You always want security for your family. But I've learned to play through one-year contracts," Sanders said. "Fortunately, things have worked out."

    Sanders' wife, Wyndee, is expecting the couple's fourth child early next month. Constantly relocating does exact a toll. He still doesn't know why he's one of the game's ultimate traveling men, a guy who didn't sign with the Pirates until a week after camps opened last year. Sanders switched agents after hitting 23 homers in 2002 for San Francisco. He accepts it as partial explanation.

    "I sometimes look at what I've accomplished for a good part of my career and wonder why (he has lacked security)," he said. "I've had some pretty productive years. I really don't know. I guess I'm not the best one to ask."

    In a way, Sanders is St. Louis' accidental tourist. At the winter meetings in December, the Cardinals went to bed one night believing they had struck a deal with mercurial but gifted switch-hitter Carl Everett on a two-year, $6 million contract. They awoke to discover Everett had accepted a $7 million bid from the Montreal Expos and general manager Omar Minaya, with whom he developed a friendship while both were with the New York Mets.

    Sanders, whose reputation as a positive clubhouse influence clashed with fellow free agent outfielder Raul Mondesi's baggage, became the Cardinals' fallback. The Detroit Tigers nearly signed Sanders as the Cardinals courted Everett. Sanders, however, flinched before accepting their two-year offer.

    "I didn't want to go there," he said. "Two days later, the Cardinals got in the picture."

    The Cardinals had pondered signing Sanders and moving left fielder Albert Pujols to first base in December 2001 before committing to first baseman Tino Martinez. Sanders eventually signed with the Diamondbacks for a $1 million base. The Redbirds inked Martinez for three years, $21 million and blanket no-trade protection through last season. Last season Sanders became the fifth player in Pirates history to hit 30 home runs in a season.

    Cardinals manager Tony La Russa admits he has wondered about Sanders' endless migration.

    "He's got a really good reputation," La Russa said. "He's always been attractive to us. I don't even want to ask him (about his travels) because it's so personal. It's surprising. I don't know if it's circumstance or the money wasn't there."

    So why the rub?

    Sanders strikes out a lot, at least 108 times in the eight seasons in which he as received at least 400 at-bats. He led the league with 114 with the Reds in 1994. He has never played more than 140 games in a season and, counting minor leagues, has landed on the disabled list 17 times since being drafted in 1987.

    "I've looked at the number of games people have played," Sanders said. "In most cases we're talking about a difference of 10 games. I don't think that's a great big difference when you look at everything."

  • #2
    devy, your boy pgrote already does, i believe, as noted on the Cards Sponsorship thread that you update!

    and..you want to be a sportscaster?!!? (paraphrased from an old seinfeld)

    :P
    The things that will destroy America are prosperity-at-any-price, peace-at-any-price, safety-first instead of duty-first, the love of soft living, and the get-rich-quick theory of life. -TR

    OFFICIAL LOUNGE SPONSOR OF NEW YORK CITY, TEDDY ROOSEVELT AND THE MARYLAND TERRAPINS

    Madyaks2 Thought Of The Day: I'm just as dumb as madyaks1.

    Comment


    • #3
      Dev ... I got your humor.

      Comment


      • #4
        Who is sponsoring him?

        If no one wants to, I guess I will.
        I'm always right.

        Comment


        • #5
          Kaiser,

          Did you ever meet Woodrow Wilson?

          Doamtoft adn Kah were argueing about that yesterday.
          Un-Official Sponsor of Randy Choate and Kevin Siegrist

          Comment


          • #6
            They were arguing about whether I met Woodrow Wilson? Where was this argument going on? I would probably have the definitive answer on that question.
            I'm always right.

            Comment


            • #7
              If Sanders is such a good guy, why won't anyone sign him? Weird.
              Dude. Can. Fly.

              Comment


              • #8
                everyone signs him Dvy....
                Un-Official Sponsor of Randy Choate and Kevin Siegrist

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by lazydaze@Mar 1 2004, 10:20 AM
                  everyone signs him Dvy....
                  ... to a long-term deal ...
                  Dude. Can. Fly.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by dvyyyyyy@Mar 1 2004, 10:05 AM
                    If Sanders is such a good guy, why won't anyone sign him? Weird.
                    I was one who had frequently taken the viewpoint that he must be a problem guy for a team - in large part due to his being with so many clubs for only one season (and also in part because of what I felt was his unwarrented flareup with Morris in the '01 NLDS).

                    I hope I was wrong, and based on what I've read about him recently, it certainly appears that I was.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by kaiser@Mar 1 2004, 09:33 AM
                      Who is sponsoring him?

                      If no one wants to, I guess I will.
                      Good idea, Kaiser.

                      Sanders will prove to be a huge signing for our club. His RBI and home run total will provide a major boost for this lineup...everyone will be happy he's part of the club when all is said and done.

                      Trust me.
                      "Let me lay it right on the line. Bigotry and racism are among the deadliest social ills plaguing the world today. The only way to destroy them is to expose them. If man is ever to be worthy of his destiny, we must fill our hearts with tolerance.- Stan Lee (circa 1968)

                      "Compete less with the person in front of you than the person inside of you." - Anonymous

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        In a way, Sanders is St. Louis' accidental tourist. At the winter meetings in December, the Cardinals went to bed one night believing they had struck a deal with mercurial but gifted switch-hitter Carl Everett on a two-year, $6 million contract. They awoke to discover Everett had accepted a $7 million bid from the Montreal Expos and general manager Omar Minaya, with whom he developed a friendship while both were with the New York Mets.
                        This part was surprising to me. I didn't know the Cardinals looked at Everett and I hope he enjoys his extra $1 million to get his ass kicked every night and to play a bunch of games in Puerto Rico.
                        Official sponsor of Mike Shannon's Retirement Party

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by ElviswasaBluesFan@Mar 1 2004, 11:09 AM
                          In a way, Sanders is St. Louis' accidental tourist. At the winter meetings in December, the Cardinals went to bed one night believing they had struck a deal with mercurial but gifted switch-hitter Carl Everett on a two-year, $6 million contract. They awoke to discover Everett had accepted a $7 million bid from the Montreal Expos and general manager Omar Minaya, with whom he developed a friendship while both were with the New York Mets.
                          This part was surprising to me. I didn't know the Cardinals looked at Everett and I hope he enjoys his extra $1 million to get his ass kicked every night and to play a bunch of games in Puerto Rico.
                          I am much more content with Sanders than Everett.

                          I can not stand him.
                          Un-Official Sponsor of Randy Choate and Kevin Siegrist

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Supposedly, the Cards were also interested in Mondesi and Cruz Jr.
                            When you say to your neighbor, "We're having a loud party on Saturday night if that's alright with you," what you really mean is, "We're having a loud party on Saturday night."

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I remeber those two names. Stil would say i am content with Sanders. Might have been OK with Cruz Jr. He reminds me of JD Drew though.
                              Un-Official Sponsor of Randy Choate and Kevin Siegrist

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