Colby Ryan Rasmus (born August 11, 1986 in Columbus, Georgia) is a Major League Baseball outfielder for the St. Louis Cardinals.

Early yearsEdit

Rasmus played as pitcher and first baseman for Phenix City National Little League during the 1999 Little League World Series. Phenix City won the United States championship game[1] before losing in the finals to Osaka, Japan 5-0.[2] Rasmus finished the World Series with a batting average of .417 and a pitching record of 0-1 with 7 strikeouts.

Rasmus attended Russell County High School in Seale, Alabama. As a senior, he batted .484 with 24 home runs with 66 RBI and 69 runs scored in 39 games . His 24 home runs passed Bo Jackson for second all-time in the state for home runs in a season by a high school player. In a pre-draft workout, Rasmus was clocked at Template:Convert throwing from center field. He also ran 60 yards in 6.7 seconds. Rasmus helped lead Russell County to a national championship in 2005 as they finished the season ranked first in both the National High School Baseball Coaches Association poll and the USA TODAY Super 25 baseball rankings.[3][4] Rasmus graduated from Russell County High School in 2005.

Professional careerEdit

Minor leagues (2005–2008)Edit

File:Colby Rasmus (Swing of the Quad Cities, 2006).jpg
Rasmus was drafted by the Cardinals with the 28th pick of the first round out of high school. The pick was sent to the Cardinals from the Boston Red Sox in compensation for the Red Sox signing Edgar Rentería in free agency. Rasmus received a $1,000,000 signing bonus from the Cardinals.

Rasmus ended his 2006 season, his second in professional baseball, on the High-A Palm Beach Cardinals team. Between Low-A Quad Cities and High-A Palm Beach, he combined for a .288 average, 16 home runs, 26 doubles, He won the Player of the Month Award in August, batting .365 with 12 home runs.

The Tulsa Drillers (AA) manager, Stu Cole, commented on Rasmus' high level of talent: "If there was a five-tool player in the league last year, Rasmus was the one. He brought everything to the table. And defensively he made more plays to save his team runs. If the ball was in the air there was a chance you were going to see something exciting.".[5]

For the 2007 season, Rasmus was assigned to the Springfield Cardinals, AA affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals. Later, he played in the Arizona Fall League during winter of 2007 for Team USA. He batted .286 over six games.[6]

He was a non-roster invitee to the Cardinals in spring training, Template:By trying to claim a regular spot in the lineup after the Cardinals traded Jim Edmonds on December 15, 2007. On March 17, 2008, the Cardinals assigned Rasmus to the AAA Memphis Redbirds.

In 2008, Rasmus was selected to play baseball as a member of the US Olympic Team in the Beijing Olympics, but he was unable to attend due to injury.Template:Citation needed

Major leagues (2009–present)Edit

On January 23, 2009, the Cardinals gave out 20 non-roster invitations (including three free agents) to spring training, including their top minor-league players Rasmus, and Brett Wallace.[7]

Rasmus was included in Baseball America's 2009 Top 100 Prospects list as the #3 prospect in all of MLB.[8]

On April 3, 2009, Rasmus was named to the opening day roster of the St. Louis Cardinals.

He made his major-league debut on April 7 against Pittsburgh at Busch Stadium.[9] He earned his first major league hit in his second career at-bat, on a single to right field off Pittsburgh's Ian Snell. He went 2-for-4 in the game, with two runs scored, including his first career run on a home run by Albert Pujols.

On May 2, he hit his first home run vs. the Washington Nationals while Pujols took a day off after playing in the team's first 24 games. The Cardinals lost the game, 6-1.[10]

On June 19, he had his first four-hit game, in a 10-5 victory against the Kansas City Royals in which Pujols scored his 1000th career run.

On July 1, he hit his first career walk-off home run off Bob Howry, giving the Cardinals a 2-1 victory over the San Francisco Giants, leading all NL rookies with eight home runs and 29 RBIs. He was the first Cardinals rookie to hit a game-winning home run since Andy Van Slyke in August, 1983.

On September 5, 2010, it was reported that Rasmus requested a trade from General Manager John Mozeliak because of a shortage of playing time, and a strained relationship with manager Tony La Russa. Rasmus attempted to downplay the rumor[11] and Mozeliak indicated he would not trade Rasmus.[12]

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