Yadier Molina and Adam Wainwright set for more magic in St. Louis
In their 17th year together, the two oldest players in the National League are still there. The 2021 home opener at Busch Stadium is just the newest chapter
ST. LOUIS – Before the 2020 season, I wrote how Adam Wainwright and Yadier Molina would drive into the sunset after both contracts expired as Cardinals Legends at the end of the season. I really should have known better about this couple.
All that happened was a global pandemic that cut Molina and Wainwright’s final years of contract short. Wainwright continues to look rejuvenated as the club’s best starter and Molina looks like he will play until he is 50.
The Cardinals were thankful to hold the two together on one-year contracts for 2021. I don’t just say thankful for the baseball skills they bring to the cardinals. I say grateful because something would be inherently wrong if these two ever played anywhere other than St. Louis.
Wainwright and Molina go together like peanut butter and chocolate. Like Ted Drewes and a hot summer day in St. Louis. Like Frank Cusumano and Italian food. OK, you get the picture.
You have given us a multitude of moments over the years. From that last pitch in 2006 to their masked full hug last year, this couple has brought so much joy to Cardinals fans.
On Thursday, 15 years after the final against the Tigers, they will evoke another memory on the opening day 2021 at the Busch Stadium.
Just think how wild this phrase is. Adam Wainwright starts with Yadier Molina in 2021. They are the two oldest players in the National League. No matter how much you love these guys, I don’t think anyone even thought this was possible.
Children who were likely born after 1998 are unlikely to remember a time before Yadier Molina and Adam Wainwright. A generation of Cardinals fans had these two guys as their heroes. That’s a legacy, and it’s not one that every fan base gets.
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This is the 17th season that Wainwright and Molina have been teammates. This is the longest tenure for two Cardinals teammates in the club’s history. According to the Cardinals, this is the only such streak in the National League since Roberto Clemente and Bill Mazeroski did so from 1956 to 1972. This is downright crazy.
Thursday’s opening day is the 276th day the two were batterymates in a regular season game. That’s the most in Cardinals history and the sixth highest in Major League history. The pair should come in fifth on this list later this season.
There will come a day when we can no longer watch her play baseball. I honestly stopped thinking about when that would be. It doesn’t seem to matter anymore. I’ll just enjoy it every time these guys are out on the field together in 2021.
And on opening day, we’re lucky enough that they do just that.