Schumaker graduated from Aliso Niguel High School before a short, two-year career at the University of California, Santa Barbara where he was a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity. In Template:By, his only year with regular playing time, Schumaker had 100 total hits for a batting average of an even .400, while achieving 41 RBI. During this year, he was selected in the 5th round of the amateur draft by the Cardinals, and elected not to return to college for a final year.
Schumaker spent the remainder of 2001 with the short-season New Jersey Cardinals, and in Template:By he had 158 hits for the Potomac Cannons. His minor-league career advanced from Single-A in Template:By, when he was promoted to the Tennessee Smokies, where he spent two full seasons. A .316 batting average in Template:By was enough to give him a shot with the Cardinals during spring training in Template:By.
After spending the first two months of the season in Memphis, Schumaker made his major-league debut on June 8 against the Boston Red Sox at Busch Stadium. Schumaker entered the game as a pinch-hitter for the pitcher, Chris Carpenter, and was struck out by David Wells. Schumaker remained with the club until June 14, failing to pick up a hit in five at bats.
Schumaker was given a second spell in St. Louis on injury cover on August 10, and picked up his first major-league hit two days later in a pinch-hit appearance against the Chicago Cubs. He returned to Memphis following the August 14 game, with one hit in his eight games as a major-league hitter. On September 8, 2005, Schumaker went over into the stands and made a great catch. Schumaker hit his first Major League home run on April 5, 2006, in a game against the Philadelphia Phillies. He played in 28 regular-season games in 2006 for St. Louis, but did not appear in the postseason (the Cardinals went on to win the World Series that year).
Schumaker had his most successful season in Template:By, batting .333 in 177 at bats. His 2007 success and a strong spring training won him the starting left field position and the leadoff spot on Opening Day, Template:By.
Schumaker is a capable lead-off hitter and a very strong defensive outfielder with an above-average arm. However, he has difficulty against lefthanders; from 2007 to 2009, he had a .210 batting average, a .278 on-base percentage, and a .226 slugging percentage against them. He had six hits in seven at bats against the New York Mets on July 26, the first Cardinal to do so since Terry Moore against the Boston Braves on September 5, 1935. Combined, Schumaker and his teammate, Albert Pujols, were the first pair of Cardinals to hit five or more hits each since Charlie Gelbert and Taylor Douthit against the Chicago Cubs on May 16, 1930.
On February 9, 2009, Cardinal 2nd baseman Adam Kennedy was released by the club, which sparked discussion about placing Schumaker as the regular second baseman in 2009. Schumaker, who played shortstop in high school and college began working out with Cardinals third base coach Jose Oquendo in Spring Training to prepare. Mark McGwire has served as his hitting coach since the 2009 offseason. Schumaker would go on to become the Cardinals' starting second baseman during the 2009 season.
On February 8, 2010, Schumaker signed a two-year deal with the St. Louis Cardinals worth $4.7 million, buying out his final arbitration years.
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