Adam Wainwright has had an outstanding Major League Baseball career. That’s really putting it lightly, as the towering right-hander has been among his generation’s premier pitchers for the St. Louis Cardinals over the last 15 years.
Since 2005, Wainwright has never donned any other threads than the Cardinal red on a big-league field. Along with longtime catcher Yadier Molina, Wainwright is undoubtedly one of the franchise’s faces in St. Louis.
During his tenure, Wainwright won 167 regular-season games while fashioning a Hall of Fame-Esque 3.38 ERA. He also boasts three All-Star selections, four top-3 finishes in National League Cy Young Award – baseball’s top individual prize for pitchers – voting, and a reputation as a clutch playoff performer.
Wainwright directs the glory for his on-field success toward God, as he’s long been unafraid to be open about his Christian faith in the public eye. In fact, one endeavor that has drawn attention over the past calendar year is his Bible-reading outreach in partnership with his home church in southern Georgia.
With an email subscriber base of more than 20,000 along with an associated Twitter handle – @WalkingWithWaino – sporting a following of almost 16,000, Wainwright is spreading the Word to a vast audience and certainly doing his part to fulfill “The Great Commission.”
19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
(Matthew 28:19-20 ESV)
Sharing the Bible with thousands is not the only good work Wainwright has recently been doing off the field. Back in the spring of 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic initially hit the United States hard, the veteran pitcher helped lead an effort through Big League Impact – a nonprofit that he founded in 2013 – to feed kids around the nation that rely heavily on school breakfast and lunch programs while so many educational facilities’ doors were closed.
Wainwright’s organization partnered with that of country music legend Garth Brooks – Teammates for Kids – to deliver more than four million meals through a mission they called the Home Plate Project. Another big-league hurler, Kyle Gibson – who serves as VP of Big-League Impact – of the Texas Rangers, was also very involved.
Wainwright definitely does not frown on having a little fun with charitable undertakings either. For the 2020 NFL season, he organized a fantasy football league comprised of current and former fellow MLB players. Each participant was competing on behalf of their charity of choice. Wainwright finished first in the competition that wrapped up in December, bringing in $50,000 to help fight poverty around St. Louis. The league, in total, resulted in $300,000 being given out to various causes.
It really is no wonder Wainwright was honored by Major League Baseball as its 2020 recipient of the Roberto Clemente Award. The award is handed out annually to a player that demonstrates a commitment to the community and the value of helping others. After being nominated five times and finally winning it for the first time, Wainwright said, “this is the greatest honor of my entire career.”
–Written by Nate Miller