Jim Edmonds wants back in

January, 20, 2010
1/20/10
4:19
PM ET
Is Jim Edmonds serious? Does he really want to play baseball again?
    That's what his longtime agent, Paul Cohen, expressed to FoxSports.com recently, when he told the Web site his 39-year-old client has formally asked him to speak on his behalf "with a series of particular teams about his comeback."

    "He feels great," Cohen was quoted as saying on Tuesday. "He would love to get back to the playoffs and reach 400 home runs. Those are the two goals he's talking about right now."

    --snip--

    On Sunday night at an annual benefit for Cardinals manager Tony La Russa's Animal Rescue Foundation, Edmonds "challenged" La Russa to let him return to the Cardinals in 2010 and play for the league minimum. At the time, it was thought that Edmonds -- out of baseball in 2009 -- could be joking.

    But during the Cardinals' Winter Warm-Up on Monday, several of his former St. Louis teammates said they're sure the four-time All-Star was serious. And La Russa said he'll at least consider the offer.

    "What I told him was, I had not figured on this development," La Russa said at the time. "Out of respect, we'll have a serious discussion about it. But he hasn't played in a year. There's a lot of obstacles there. But we'll talk about it."

What about 2,000 hits? Edmonds is 18 homers short of 400, and 119 hits short of 2,000. Seems to me that if he makes a comeback -- or a return, as Norma Desmond would prefer -- he's as likely to hit one mark as the other.

I'd like to see him hit both. I don't suppose it'll make any difference because Edmonds simply hasn't done the things that impress Hall of Fame voters. He's sort of our version of Bobby Grich. Like Grich, Edmonds retired (so far, anyway) while still in his late 30s. Like Grich, Edmonds finished (so far, anyway) short of 1,900 hits. Like Grich, Edmonds was an outstanding up-the-middle defender. And like Grich, Edmonds was a big on-base guy with real pop.

And not for nothing, but Sean Smith has Grich with 67.6 Wins Above Replacement, Edmonds with 66.6; 63rd and 71st best in major league history.

WAR or no WAR, Grich isn't in the Hall of Fame and won't be. But I sure wish I'd have seen him play more than I did. For much the same reasons, I wouldn't mind seeing Edmonds get another go-round, either.

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