May The Force Be With You

From time to time, I try to tie a couple of my very favorite things–Star Wars and the Cardinals–into a wonderfully tentative package. Since I’m writing this on my phone in a place far, far away from Internet service, I can’t link up my posts of assigning players to characters or rewriting portions of the movies as if Cardinal players were in the roles. Head over to my old site at cardinal70.com and search Star Wars if you are interested.

Given that some of the assigned roles are dated–this was back when Colby Rasmus and others roamed the team–I thought that with Star Wars Night at Busch Stadium is this evening, it’s worth revisiting that concept.

So below is my take on which players would be which characters in the Star Wars universe. As before, assigning a player to a feminine character is no comment on his masculinity. Somebody’s got to be the princess and PR maven Lindsey Weber wasn’t eligible for this post (though if so, she’d be an awesome Leia).

YodaYadier Molina. This one is pretty obvious, so much so that FOX Sports Midwest had an awesome “Yodi” graphic last week. Molina is the wise mentor of the pitching staff, the strong (and somewhat surprising) wielder of the lightsaber/bat, and the general leader of the good guys. Molina may hobble to the plate at times, but can unleash a devastating flurry of hits or a seemingly Force-aided rocket to second.

Luke SkywalkerOscar Taveras. The new hope. The one who will open a new era of the Force (or of Cardinal baseball). Strong in skills and raw but ready for the fight. The one long awaited–though there are no prophesies for Taveras. Unless Bob Netherton has written one.

Anakin SkywalkerCarlos Beltran. Yes, I know FSMW used Carlos as a stand-in for C3PO but, honestly, does anyone think a dominant offensive force like Beltran could be a protocol droid in the SW universe? Beltran used his talents for evil–or at least Houston and New York–before being redeemed late in his (baseball) life. Plus he may be ushered off the stage by Taveras, though it seems unlikely Taveras will put him on a pyre.

Han SoloAdam Wainwright. While I absolutely loved “Ace Waindu” from FSMW and could easily construct that argument, I like Waino for this role as well. He’s confident (bordering on cocky for those that don’t love him), is a major player on this team and is as great a shot with the curveball as Solo is with his blaster. Plus 80% of kids watching Star Wars wanted to be Han Solo, which is roughly the percentage of fans than want to be Wainwright.

ChewbaccaJake Westbrook. If you’ve ever seen Wainwright and Westbrook together in the dugout, this linkage makes total sense. Westbrook might not get a lot of lines in this thing we call baseball, but he’s crafty enough to surprise at times. Both he and the Wookiee like to tinker though not always are they successful. Plus Westy has the facial hair that doesn’t make this a huge reach.

Obi-Wan KenobiMatt Holliday. There aren’t a lot of choices of “veteran who has been through the wars” with this team so Holliday would almost get this by default. There are other reasons as well, though. He’s strong offensively, he’s a mentor to this team, and he is feared by the opposition. Plus, if you watched the Clone Wars cartoon, you know he occasionally was beaten up and not treated well, which would represent Holliday with a certain portion of the fan base.

Wedge AntilliesAllen Craig. Antillies is always in the middle of things. He survived both Death Star attacks. He led Rogue Squadron. In other words, when it’s got to be done, Wedge is there. Which means you know he’d be awesome with runners on, just like Mr. Craig.

Rebel SoldiersMichael Blazek, Keith Butler, Seth Maness, Kevin Siegrist. The typical soldier for the Alliance is a fresh-faced youngster just off the homestead. They do their job but are also somewhat interchangeable. The young pitchers of the Cardinal bullpen have done their duty, been thrown into the fire, and have made victories possible. Plus they tend to get swapped back and forth to Memphis, being swapped with each other.

R2-D2 and C3PO–Dan McLaughlin and Al Hrabosky. We see the Star Wars universe mainly through the eyes of the two droids. In a similar fashion, we watch Cardinal baseball often through the impressions of Dan and Al. While you might think Dan should be Threepio since he’s the lead talker, I think he’s more Artoo. He leads the droids and is quite inventive and innovative. You know if Artoo was a newsman, he’d get all the scoops. Threepio can be helpful, but often talks more than necessary and irks people, just like Al has been known to do. (Caveat–I’m hoping for a Daniel Descalso-inspired D2-D2 on tonight’s broadcast.)

Princess LeiaTrevor Rosenthal. I don’t know if anyone brings more heat in a galaxy far, far away as Leia Organa. Not only does she stand up to Vader and hold her own in a firefight, she develops her own Jedi powers as well. Rosenthal had plenty of weapons like Leia, but can be just as direct as his counterpart.

Boba FettEdward Mujica. If you consider saves as bounties, this could be the strongest connection. Mujica comes in and usually does the job, mostly without disintergrations. Also like Fett, it seems likely he’ll be well-paid and move on after this season, though hopefully not to the belly of a Sarlaac.

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