Back in December of 2003, the St. Louis Cardinals and Atlanta Braves pulled off a blockbuster trade that sent a certain top pitching prospect to St. Louis.
Wainwright made his debut in 2005 and emerged as a key piece of their bullpen in 2006, closing out the NLCS and World Series.
He’s also been an All-Star three times and has earned a Roberto Clemente Award, as well as having finished in the top three in NL Cy Young voting three times.
On Twitter, the Cardinals posted a side-by-side comparison of two photos featuring the right-hander.
How it started (2004) How it’s going (2023) pic.twitter.com/waXy6cTTHo
— St. Louis Cardinals (@Cardinals) February 24, 2023
The first one is from spring training in 2004, his first spring with the Cardinals.
The second is from this year.
It’s safe to say that Wainwright has been around a while.
The veteran right-hander and two-time World Series champion is entering the final year of his MLB career.
He’s the last remaining holdover from the Cardinals’ World Series championship teams in 2006 and 2011.
But time has certainly flown.
In the picture on the left, under the “How it started” caption, Wainwright is still very young and has yet to make his MLB debut.
He’s even wearing No. 70 instead of his iconic No. 50.
In the picture on the right, under the “How it’s going” caption, Wainwright is donning his iconic No. 50 jersey, one that he has worn since 2006.
This will be his 18th season in Major League Baseball.
Time has certainly gone by pretty quickly.
Wainwright has matured into one of the game’s most reliable starting pitchers, as well as a veteran leader in the Cards clubhouse.NEXT: Cardinals Fan Points Out Interesting Yadier Molina Fact