(Busch Stadium) As he sat in front of his locker before today’s game, Patrick Wisdom finally had a chance to catch his breath.
“Yeah,” he said with a smile when asked if he was settling in.
After being drafted in 2012 by the St. Louis Cardinals, Wisdom has enjoyed his first four days in the Major Leagues after the team purchased his contract and called him up on August 11th. And the reception from fans and teammates alike.
“It means a lot,” said Wisdom earlier this week. “I definitely have a great support system behind me that kept pushing me along the way. I’m extremely grateful and blessed to be here. It’s nice to walk into a clubhouse when you know most of the guys and able to feel comfortable around them and they’re very welcoming.”
Wisdom had to play in 747 games in the minor leagues before making it to the big leagues, but despite the wait, he never complained. Whether it was in Spring Training, at the Winter Warm-Up, when he was removed from the Cardinals 40-man roster and left exposed for other teams to select–Wisdom always remained upbeat when asked about his circumstance.
“A lot of dedication to your craft,” he credited. “Enjoying the process–as cliché as it sounds, I mean, it’s real. You’ve got to understand the process to get here and know it’s definitely worth the wait…all those years, it’s definitely worth the wait. Just kind of see the end going, trying to see the light at the end of the tunnel–even if it’s only a little glimmer, you’ve just got to keep your hopes up and stay positive throughout the whole thing.”
This season, Wisdom was batting a career high .289 and moved near the top of the Memphis (AAA) franchise leader list in home runs and RBIs. That’s a sign of success, but also extended time in the minors ala Bull Durham’s Crash Davis.
“I just was enjoying where I was at and tried not to think about the moves that were happening, whether I was going to be next or last,” said Wisdom. “The Memphis club, stellar group of guys there. We were so good, it was a lot of fun to play. Like I said, just enjoying where I was and not worrying about where I could or where I should be. It was staying in the moment.”
Among those who reached out to congratulate Wisdom was Allen Craig. The two are from the same area of California and the former Cardinal provided some early advice when Wisdom was first drafted. Ironically, Wisdom was assigned number 21, same as Craig.
“Just coincidence,” said Wisdom, who did not make any numerical request for his uniform.
Heading into tonight, Wisdom was batting .500 (3-6) and had scored 3 runs for St. Louis while appearing at both third and first base.
photo credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports