Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith Has 'a Couple Innings Left in Him' if Depleted Cardinals Call

75756A5E-120A-4932-810C-2FD980DB785E

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - St. Louis Cardinals manager Mike Shildt shared that Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith texted coach Willie McGee and said "he has got a couple of innings left in him" to replace Paul DeJong at shortstop since he will be out after testing positive for coronavirus. The Cardinals backup shortstop Edmundo Sosa was also one of the players that tested positive for COVID-19.

Shildt joked that they could have the 65-year-old shortstop – who won 13 Gold Gloves – move through the COVID-19 testing intake process quicker than most to be ready to play.

“The Red Jacket might get you less than 5 (days)," Shildt says, in reference to the red sports coat that is given to all Cardinals Hall of Famers. "I think you take a test and wait two days and he would be ready.”

Shildt said it would be hard to place the 12-time All-Star too far down the lineup. When asked what Ozzie could do with his bat at his age, Shildt tried to recall the tale of Ted Williams as an old man saying he could hit around .320 right now, then pausing and saying, ‘Well, I am 75-years-old.’

Shildt said he would be curious to see if Ozzie would use the infielders’ positioning card that players use to play defense for certain hitters.

“He’d probably feel pretty good about his own positioning,” Shildt said.

On Monday, the Cardinals announced 13 people (seven players and six staff members) on the team's travel party tested positive for COVID-19. Only the Miami Marlins have reported more cases to this point in the shortened season.