Posted tagged ‘Skip Shumaker’

St. Louis Cardinals World Series ring features “Rally Squirrel”

April 16, 2012

The Cardinals received their World Series rings before Saturday’s game, and each ring includes the player’s name, number and the years of the Cardinals’ 10 previous championships.

They also include a tiny squirrel running across home plate.

In Game 4 of last year’s NL Division Series, a squirrel darted across home plate during Skip Schumaker‘s at-bat — and the Busch Stadium crowd went wild.

Cardinals fans adopted the critter’s image throughout the playoffs, when it was seen on T-shirts, memorabilia and images on stadium screens.

Earlier this year, a short-printed variant of Schumaker’s Topps baseball card focused on the squirrel.

The rings, designed and produced by Jostens, feature faceted rubies, a 14 karat yellow gold frame and 103 round diamonds.

The underside lists the three playoff series scores and the words “Happy Flight,” the Cardinals’ clubhouse rallying cry last season.

“We are excited to present the 2011 team with their rings,” owner Bill DeWitt III said in a statement. “We worked hard to design a ring that would tell the epic story of 2011, and also pay tribute to the great history of the franchise.”

These rings are really cool because of the personalization. Having the writing “Happy Flight” on the inside and the rally squirrel on the outside gives the team an identity and makes the ring special. Besides being World Champions, they are known for these stories. I think more teams need to use this type of thinking when making rings because it could make them more personal and fun so people like Brandon Jacobs don’t sell their ring for extra cash. I think the Cardinals run in 2011 was so memorable that it garnished this type of ring. If it weren’t for the squirrel, where would they be…

Time to rally in St. Louis! The Rally Squirrel comes to life

October 12, 2011

Via ESPN:

Tony La Russa and the St. Louis Cardinals are going nuts for the Rally Squirrel.

The team plans to distribute 40,000 rally towels with a squirrel motif for Game 3 of the NL Championship Series Wednesday night against Milwaukee. In addition, stuffed Rally Squirrels are available for $5 at the Busch Stadium team store, along with “Got Squirrel” T-shirts and additional rally towels.

“I think it’s good. The fans are having fun,” said La Russa, the Cardinals’ buttoned-up manager. “And I really believe that. This is not old-school, and I know I am in many ways, but I think there’s so much attention and pressure on the players that sometimes they don’t show their happiness.”

La Russa is as serious as they come on game day. Yet he’s enjoying all the fuss over the Rally Squirrel.

“I’ve really gotten over getting upset over it. Sometimes I think it’s a release. So I think it’s fun,” he said.

It all started during the division series against Philadelphia when a squirrel, or squirrels, was seen scampering around the field — in both cities.

Twice, with a twinkle in his eye, La Russa has suggested that the squirrel or squirrels was dating utility man Allen Craig‘s pet tortoise, Torty, and that the squirrel was looking for Torty when it scooted past home plate just as Phillies right-hander Roy Oswalt made a pitch to Skip Schumaker.

“As far as the squirrel and the tortoise is concerned, they had this relationship, so I think it first came out there because Craig wasn’t playing, and his boyfriend told him or girlfriend or whatever it was,” La Russa said. “And this squirrel was looking for Craig, ran all over, finally found him.”

There’s also a prolific Torty Twitter feed, accompanied by a photo of a turtle wearing a Cardinals cap on a rock. Craig denies any involvement.

“I have no idea, I swear,” Craig said. “Somebody started a Torty account and that’s that.”

There were no squirrel sightings at Busch Stadium on Tuesday as the Cardinals and Brewers prepared for Game 3.

Cardinals officials said they had nabbed four of the critters in humane cages since the team went on the road — one of them on the walkway in center field beyond the pasture and another near the Brewers’ dugout.

I am not gonna lie, this is pretty awesome! I like how they are selling the shirts and towels for 5 dollars. That is very reasonable and I think fans will certainly run to get those when the gates open. But one thing that bothers me about this whole situation is it reminds me a lot of the 2002 Anaheim Angels and their Rally Monkey. Granted, yes it did win them a World Series but on the other hand, it really got annoying for other fans watching the games. While I think this is a great idea for the fans, the team, and the playoffs, I don’t think that it would be good to overhaul the viewers on television and Brewers fans about this big deal. Yes, its great entertainment. But no, you can’t take it over the edge. The reason for that is you will never know when “Beast Mode” might come in and ruin the parade…