(Busch Stadium) The 10 year anniversary of the St. Louis Cardinals winning the 2006 World Series continued on Tuesday night as Jeff Suppan was in the house to throw out the ceremonial first pitch.
“I’m just happy I threw a decent pitch,” laughed Suppan afterwards. “In the playoffs, I air-mailed it–that was my first time in street clothes on the mound. This time I had been practicing in street clothes in my backyard.”
The Most Valuable Player of the 2006 National League Championship Series, Suppan allowed just one run and five hits in the 15.0 innings he pitched over two starts.
“I think the struggles we went through to get there,” he recalled of that postseason. “I know that in other years we had won a lot of games and probably had a stronger team going into the playoffs. That year we came in, it was 83 wins. I just remember the championship series was intense. It was an intense series, any time a series goes seven games you really don’t know what’s going to happen.”
In 2004, Suppan had another big game performance–beating Roger Clemens and the Houston Astros in Game 7 to send the Cardinals to the World Series.
“For me, I tried to be the same in every game I ever pitched in–every game was the biggest game of the year,” said Suppan. “That way when I was in that “biggest game” I wasn’t nervous. I had already pitched in them. It just happened, it worked well that I was in the right place mentally, physically, and I pitched.”
After fifteen years in the restaurant and bar business, Suppan shared that he and his wife have sold Soup’s Sports Grill in Woodland, California and will be moving to Idaho Falls.
“I’ve taken a job and I’ll be coaching in the Pioneer League,” said Suppan.
The Chukars are the rookie league affiliate of the Kansas City Royals, for whom Suppan pitched five seasons (’98-’02).
photo credit: Bill Greenblatt/UPI