7. David Eckstein, Shortstop, St. Louis Cardinals
At 83-78, the 2006 Cardinals hold the distinction of having the worst regular season record of any World Series champion. Fittingly, in a lineup loaded with All-Stars like Albert Pujols, Jim Edmonds and Scott Rolen, it was the scrappy, overachieving Eckstein that took home MVP honors for St. Louis.
Eckstein previously stole America’s hearts in the 2002 World Series as a member of the Rally Monkey led Anaheim Angels. Now a Redbird, the X Factor outdid his previous Fall Classic appearance by batting .364 with four RBIs. Eckstein got off to a cold start by going just 1-for-11 in the Series’ first two games, but turned his series around by going 4-for-5 with three doubles in Game 4.