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St. Louis Cardinals: Star Wars Night (Revisited)

It's Star Wars night again at Busch Stadium.

Back on May 4th (may the fourth, get it?) I put together a fun comparison of some of our Cardinals players and an accompanying Star Wars character. With Wednesday night being the return of Star Wars Night at Busch Stadium, I decided to revisit the subject. I have included the comparisons from the original article at the bottom of the page, but I am proud to present a whole new cast of characters. I hope you enjoy.

Jedd Gyorko / Lando Calrissian

Easily the most relate-able guy in the entire cast, how can you not like the guy? Not much was expect of him when he first appeared, pegged simply as a side character, but he quickly made himself a huge part of the story. Coming into 2017, we were unsure of his defensive abilities at 3B, but as Lando says, “we just have to give him more time.” With it he has proven to be a more than capable glove man. Oh by the way, Lando rose to prominence at the Bespin Mining Facility. Jedd is from the coal country of West Virginia.

Tommy Pham / Chewbacca

An absolute fan favorite and incredible soundbyte. Just like the Wookie in the films, Pham is the steady, somewhat un-heralded savior of the 2017 Cardinals season. Though not appearing in the earliest days (chronologically, Chewie did not appear until Episode III) he has been vital to the story line since his arrival. Just as the first memory of Chewbacca is his rescue of Yoda from Order 66, our first sighting of Pham had him delivering for the Cardinals in extra innings against Atlanta. His heroics have continued since, making him arguably the most important single character in the saga.

Theo Epstein & Joe Maddon / Emperor Palpatine & Darth Vader

Must like Palpatine’s rise from senator to Emperor, Theo Epstein was once just one of many GM’s in baseball. He then rose to be the leader of the evil Empire (Cubs). Executing his own “Order 66” he turned former Cardinals Jason Heyward and John Lackey against us and has successfully toppled the Old Republic (Cardinals) of the Central Division.

His Chief Administrator of Doom is Joe Maddon. Imagine, a promising and innocent Maddon in Tampa Bay. An admitted life-long Cardinals fan, this Anakin Skywalker version of Maddon had many fans of the local nine holding out hope that he would be the “chosen one” to succeed Tony La Russa and continue the great tradition of the Cardinals Order. And then, their worst fears were realized as Theo tempted him with the powers of the Dark Side, and Darth T-Shirt was born.

Paul DeJong / Finn

A bit of a wide-eyed kid, he’s been running around like crazy, making things happen. While it’s awesome and exciting, we still aren’t sure he knows what he’s doing or if he’s just been incredibly lucky. Either way, he’s been very successful. His role going forward is still a mystery.

Carson Kelly / Poe Dameron

After an intriguing cameo in 2016, he captivated a fan base. Then he would disappear for a long period of time, leaving us to wonder if he had been written out of the story so soon. But now, the charismatic kid is back, dropping one-liners, and getting fans excited to see just how big of role he has going forward.

Chris Maloney / Imperial Employees in need of “Reassignment”

Here we have Hammer just letting people go through, to the detriment of his organization.

Move along, move along

The Cardinals Bullpen / The Death Star

In Low-Pressure situations:

In High-Leverage situations:

——-Following are the comps from the original, May 4th article (with one update)——-

Adam Wainwright / Luke Skywalker

He was just a young maverick in 2006 when he dropped that proton torpedo of a curveball on Carlos Beltran and helped guide the rebellion-like 83-win Cardinals to a World Series championship. Later, Waino would lose an arm (Tommy John) but came back stronger than ever thanks to the feats of modern medicine, much like Luke with his robotic hand. He’s even had a couple lengthy stays in the Dagobah System (Disabled Listed). Adam has long been the prevailing leading man of the Cardinals Saga. Now he stands as a grizzled veteran and fans are a bit unsure of his role going forward.

Yadier Molina / Han Solo

Yadi is rivaled only by Adam Wainwright in notoriety over the past 10+ years of Cardinals baseball. Based solely on that, this makes him the Han Solo of the organization. However, it does not end there for Yadier Molina. A gunslinger by trade he has successfully navigated many a pitcher through asteroid field level predicaments. Even when he lays low for a while he comes through in the clutch, much like Han in A New Hope. After batting .215 in 2006, he had a stellar post-season. I want to mention specifically his NLCS Game 7, go ahead HR that cleared the way for Wainwright to “blow this thing and go home.” As he grows older, the odds of maintaining his high games played totals decrease dramatically. But never tell him the odds.

Mike Matheny / Jar Jar Binks

A big thumbs up for Star Wars from <a rel=A superfluous character, the Cardinals push forward and have success despite his missteps. Though the ways he gets to success are sometimes tough to watch, he amazingly comes out ahead most of the time. Somehow he managed to come into a position of authority with absolutely no experience. Unlike Jar Jar, he can’t be blamed for the rise of the Empire (Chicago Cubs), but he certainly didn’t help to keep the Old Republic rolling. Still, one can’t help but wonder what story would have looked like without him playing a major role. He is someone that I really enjoyed watching as a kid, and then slowly lost appreciation for as I grew older.

Carlos Martinez / Kylo Ren

Forget the villainy with this character. Much like Kylo Ren’s mask is unnecessary and worn solely to make himself look cool, Martinez has sported wild hair extensions, silver or otherwise, or blue hair for most of this season. Understudies of Wainwright/Skywalker, both of theses characters are still growing, emotional, unfinished products. Prone to bursts of wildness, they have the capacity for greatness. However, they are still learning how to use the powers that they possess. Fairly new to the saga, we are signed up with these guys for the long run. We sincerely hope they can be as memorable as those that have come before.

Seung-Hwan Oh / R2-D2 : Eugene Koo / C-3PO

Star Wars is fun for the whole family

These guys are a packaged deal. Small in stature, Oh is a huge part of the team’s success. Where R2-D2 saved the rebellion by opening doors on Cloud City, Seung-Hwan Oh saves the Cardinals by closing doors in the 9th inning. And then there’s Eugene Koo, following him around. The resident translator (C-3PO was fluent in over 6 million languanges), he is the only guy in the Cardinals universe that understands what Oh is saying. UPDATE: (Oh)2-D2 has gone into a dormant state this year, no longer being the valuable member of the team he once was. I’m not so sure the Force will be awakening any time soon.

Honorable Mention

Here’s a few more that aren’t fully developed but fun all the same.
Matt Carpenter as Obi-wan Kenobi – The bearded man is not afraid to be struck down with his weapon still sitting on his shoulder.
Kolten Wong as the Ewoks – Under-appreciated and often criticized, there is no denying that his success is pivotal to victory.
Dan McLaughin as Admiral Akbar – Simply because any time an outfielder catches the ball on a short-hop he has the opportunity to exclaim, “IT’S A TRAP!”
Thanks for Reading!
Rusty Groppel
I'm a diehard Cardinals fan that feels privileged to write about his favorite team in this corner of cyberspace. I'm also the bass player for the best damn band in the 618, Tanglefoot. Check us out some time.
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