Cardinals present Wainwright with puppy as retirement present

Adam Wainwright of the Cardinals is gifted a puppy as he is honored during his retirement ceremony before Sunday’s regular-season finale against the Reds at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. (Associated Press)

ST. LOUIS -- Adam Wainwright promised his children he would get a family dog when he retired from baseball.

He didn’t have to. The St. Louis Cardinals presented the Wainwrights a Lagotto Romagnolo puppy during a 35-minute ceremony before the 42-year-old pitcher’s final game with the team Sunday. Wainwright’s wife Jenny named the puppy Louie.

The Wainwrights have four daughters: Baylie Grace (17), Addison (14), Macy James (11) and Sadee Faith (5), along with 4-year-old son Caleb Adam.

Wainwright went 200-128 with a 3.53 ERA in 18 major league seasons, all with the Cardinals. He got his 200th win in his final pitching appearance Sept. 18 against Milwaukee.

Former teammate, friend and longtime catcher Yadier Molina was among a host of players participating in the ceremony. Wainwright and Molina were batterymates in a major league-record 328 games.

Wainwright was not expecting Molina and he buried his head in his hands when Molina came onto the field. Albert Pujols, Scott Rolen, Ozzie Smith, Chris Carpenter, Jason Isringhausen and former manager Tony La Russa were among the ex-Cardinals who attended. Carpenter, Pujols and Molina made speeches.

“I love you all so much,” an emotional Wainwright told the sold-out crowd.