Seeking a general manager who could turn the Cardinals from flops into champions, team owner Gussie Busch sought the advice of the leader of the publication considered the authority on baseball.

frank_laneSixty years ago, as the 1955 season neared its end, Busch asked J.G. Taylor Spink, publisher of The Sporting News, to recommend the best general manager to hire. Spink suggested Frank Lane of the White Sox.

In September 1955, Lane resigned from the White Sox. He sent a telegram to Busch. The wire read: “Have tux, will travel.”

A short time later, on Oct. 6, 1955, Busch hired Lane to be general manager of the Cardinals.

In his St. Louis-based weekly, Spink wrote of Lane’s hire, “Probably the most exciting chapter in the history of St. Louis baseball is about to be enacted … The Cardinals will have a team that will win more games _ or the players who lose won’t be around long.”

Taking a trader

Busch had bought the Cardinals in 1953 and had appointed one of his Anheuser-Busch executives, Dick Meyer, as general manager. Meyer was better suited to run the business side of the franchise rather than the baseball operations side.

As the Cardinals headed to a 68-86 record and next-to-last finish in the National League in 1955, Busch wanted a general manager with a proven record of producing a winner.

Busch turned for advice to Spink, who, according to St. Louis journalist Bob Broeg, recommended Lane as the best general manager available.

Lane, a longtime baseball executive, had become general manager of the White Sox after they finished the 1948 season in last place in the American League at 51-101.

Lane turned around the White Six through trades. The White Sox produced a winning season at 81-73 in 1951. Then they became contenders. The White Sox had 89 wins in 1953, 94 in 1954 and 91 in 1955.

In seven seasons (1949-55) with the White Sox, Lane made 241 trades involving 353 players. He earned the nickname “Trader.”

Rich resources

Busch sent Meyer to New York to begin negotiations with Lane during the 1955 World Series between the Dodgers and Yankees. That led to a follow-up meeting involving Busch, Lane and Meyer in St. Louis.

The Cardinals signed Lane, 59, to a three-year contract. Meyer was promoted to executive vice president. Bill Walsingham Jr., a Cardinals vice president for nine years, resigned, acknowledging the club didn’t need two vice presidents.

Busch gave Lane “full authority” to make all baseball decisions.

“I had three offers but only considered one of them _ the job with the St. Louis club,” Lane said. “Why? Because the Cardinals have the potential for a great club and I know the management has the wherewithal to get what it needs if it doesn’t have what it takes to win.

“I don’t think I’m going too far when I say we should be a first division club and quite possibly a contender if we made the deals needed to augment an already fine nucleus of talent.”

Asked if any Cardinals players were untouchables for trading, Lane replied, “Yes. We’ll start with Stan Musial, then add Red Schoendienst, Bill Virdon, Wally Moon, Ken Boyer, Harvey Haddix and a few others.”

Lane identified the Cardinals’ top needs as a first baseman, catcher and pitching.

His first major move was to replace manager Harry Walker with Fred Hutchinson, the former Tigers manager.

Bad deals

According to Broeg, Lane would watch Cardinals home games from the roof outside the press box, “squinting like a sunworshipper who didn’t see well and listening to the radio.”

“Lane lived for baseball, traveling always with a radio at his ear and a stack of newspaper sports sections under his arm,” Broeg wrote in the book, “Redbirds: A Century of Cardinals Baseball.”

Expecting magic, the Cardinals instead saw blunders in the trades Lane made in 1956. Among his worst deals that season:

_ Pitchers Harvey Haddix and Stu Miller to the Phillies for pitchers Murry Dickson and Herm Wehmeier.

_ Center fielder Bill Virdon to the Pirates for outfielder Bobby Del Greco and pitcher Dick Littlefield.

_ Second baseman Red Schoendienst and others to the Giants for shortstop Al Dark and others.

When Busch got wind of Lane’s plans to trade Musial to the Phillies for pitcher Robin Roberts, he blocked the deal, then told Lane that any future trade proposals would have to be approved by Busch and Meyer before being enacted.

(Lane reportedly also wanted to deal Boyer to the Phillies for outfielder Richie Ashburn.)

The 1956 Cardinals finished in fourth place at 76-78.

Win or else

Before the 1957 season, Busch told a Knights of Columbus banquet audience, “If the Cardinals don’t win this year or next, Frank Lane will be out on his ass.”

Lane was miffed. Wanting assurances he had the owner’s support, Lane asked Busch to extend his contract beyond 1958. Busch refused.

Lane did make a couple of good trades before the 1957 season, acquiring pitcher Sam Jones from the Cubs and slugging outfielder Del Ennis from the Phillies. The Cardinals placed second in the NL in 1957 at 87-67.

Still upset by Busch’s win-or-else ultimatum before the season and offended that he had to get approval before making deals, Lane resigned on November 1957, with a year remaining on his Cardinals contract, and became general manager of the Indians.

Busch replaced Lane with Bing Devine.

Previously: How Al Dark won respect of Cardinals fans

Previously: Why Gussie Busch fired Bing Devine

In a lineup of heralded run producers, including Albert Pujols, Jim Edmonds and Larry Walker, Reggie Sanders stole the spotlight with a standout RBI performance for the Cardinals in the 2005 National League Division Series.

reggie_sanders2Ten years ago, Sanders had 10 RBI in three games for the Cardinals in their series sweep of the Padres.

Sanders, 37, established a NL Division Series record for most total RBI. Doing it in the minimum three games added to the awesomeness of the achievement.

To put the feat into perspective, consider that when Pujols and David Freese each had nine RBI for the Cardinals in the 2011 NL Championship Series against the Brewers, each did so in six games. When Pujols had nine RBI for St. Louis in the 2004 NL Championship Series versus the Astros, he played seven games.

Sanders had missed 54 games during the 2005 regular season after fracturing his right leg.

In five previous NL Division Series, Sanders had produced five total RBI, including one in 14 at-bats for the Cardinals against the Dodgers in four games in 2004.

Here is a breakdown of his 10-RBI effort against the Padres in the 2005 NL Division Series:

Game 1

Sanders was 2-for-4 with six RBI and a run scored in an 8-5 Cardinals victory on Oct. 4 at St. Louis.

In the third inning, the Cardinals led, 2-0. With the bases loaded and one out, Sanders, facing starter Jake Peavy, singled off the glove of first baseman Mark Sweeney, scoring Edmonds and Pujols.

Two innings later, Sanders again faced Peavy with the bases loaded and one out. With the count 3-and-0, Sanders got the green light to swing and ripped a high pitch for a grand slam over the left field wall, increasing the Cardinals’ lead to 8-0 and knocking Peavy from the game. Video

“You pretty much got to challenge him there and we lost the challenge,” said Padres manager Bruce Bochy to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Boxscore

The grand slam was the third by a Cardinals batter in a postseason game. The others: Ken Boyer in the 1964 World Series against the Yankees and Gary Gaetti in the 1996 NL Championship Series versus the Braves.

“Everything is all about results right now,” Sanders said. “It’s all about getting your ballclub where it needs to be and to continue to go as long as you can.”

Game 2

Sanders was 1-for-4 with two RBI in the Cardinals’ 6-2 victory on Oct. 6 at St. Louis.

In the seventh, with the Cardinals ahead, 4-1, Sanders doubled off reliever Rudy Seanez, scoring Edmonds and Pujols. Boxscore

“For us, it’s all about timing,” Sanders said afterward. “Manufacture runs when you have to manufacture. Really try to put pressure on the pitcher and the defense, no matter what the circumstances are.”

Game 3

The Cardinals completed the sweep with a 7-4 victory at San Diego. Sanders was 1-for-4 with two RBI.

With the Cardinals ahead, 3-0, in the second, Sanders batted with the bases loaded against starter Woody Williams, who had been his St. Louis teammate the year before. Sanders drilled a two-run double, knocking Williams out of the game. Boxscore

For the series, Sanders batted .333 (4-for-12) with two doubles, a home run, a single, a walk and a run scored.

Previously: Cards convinced Larry Walker to join pennant push


On a day designed for lingering, honoring and enjoying, the Cardinals and their fans bid farewell to their downtown St. Louis home.

busch_stadium2Ten years ago, on Oct. 2, 2005, the Cardinals played their final regular-season game at Busch Stadium II.

Six months before they would begin play in a new downtown ballpark, the Cardinals rallied to beat the Reds, 7-5, in a game that took 3 hours and 11 minutes to complete before a crowd of 50,434.

After the game, the Cardinals conducted a two-hour ceremony that honored the players and personnel who had been a special part of Cardinals baseball at Busch Stadium II from 1966 to 2005.

Though the Cardinals would play five 2005 postseason games at Busch Stadium II _ two against the Padres in the National League Division Series and three versus the Astros in the NL Championship Series _ the regular-season finale provided the opportunity for the Cardinals and their fans to have what St. Louis Post-Dispatch columnist Bernie Miklasz described as the “world’s largest group hug.”

Hard win

Early on, it appeared the Reds might put a damper on the day. In the third inning, Felipe Lopez, Adam Dunn and Austin Kearns hit consecutive home runs off starter Matt Morris and the Reds had a 5-1 lead.

“It wasn’t the start I would have pictured, the storybook ending type of deal,” Morris told the Post-Dispatch.

The Cardinals rallied against starter Brandon Claussen, scoring three in the fourth and two in the fifth for a 6-5 lead.

Several players contributed to the comeback win. Mark Grudzielanek had three hits, a RBI and scored a run. Reggie Sanders, Yadier Molina and Abraham Nunez each had two hits, a RBI and a run scored.

Cardinals manager Tony La Russa used nine pitchers. Brad Thompson earned the win with an inning of shutout relief. Jason Isringhausen pitched a scoreless ninth for the save, giving the Cardinals their 100th win of the season.

The Cardinals left 12 runners on base; the Reds stranded 11.

“This was a really hard, hard game,” said La Russa. “Nothing was easy.” Boxscore

Redbird reunion

In the ceremony that followed, former players, coaches and managers were introduced by decade, starting with the 1960s.

Among those appearing on the field were present and future Hall of Famers Lou Brock, Steve Carlton, Bob Gibson, Whitey Herzog, Red Schoendienst, Ozzie Smith and Bruce Sutter.

Stan Musial sent word that he wasn’t feeling well and was unable to attend.

Others receiving big ovations when introduced included Jack Clark, Vince Coleman, Keith Hernandez, Tommy Herr, George Kissell, Willie McGee, Mark McGwire, Mike Shannon and Ted Simmons.

Shannon had thrown the ceremonial first pitch to Schoendienst.

“This is the place that gave birth to me and the chance to be the player I was,” Coleman said to MLB.com.

Said McGee: “This is home for a lot of us.”

Tributes were made to the deceased who had played prominent roles at Busch Stadium II. They included Ken Boyer, Nellie Briles, Jack Buck, Curt Flood, Joe Hoerner, Darryl Kile, Roger Maris and Darrell Porter.

The stadium remained filled with spectators as afternoon turned into early evening.

“To have all of those people stay here the entire time, it was amazing,” La Russa told Miklasz. “That’s the No. 1 memory I’ll have from this day, the way everyone stayed and applauded and appreciated every moment.”

Previously: Mark Mulder, Roger Clemens and the duel at Busch II

Previously: Ozzie Smith, Will Clark and the Battle at Busch II

Needing to win one of three games against the Mets to block them from taking a share of first place in the National League East, the Cardinals finally achieved the goal in the finale of an intense October series at St. Louis.

jeff_lahtiThirty years ago, on Oct. 1, 1985, the Mets trailed the first-place Cardinals by three games entering a weeknight series at Busch Stadium II.

With the tension building after Mets wins in each of the first two games, the Cardinals got a one-run victory and held on to first place alone. Two days later, on Oct. 5, they clinched the division title with a win against the Cubs.

Here is a look at that critical Mets-Cardinals series:

Game 1

The Oct. 1 game was scoreless through 10 innings. John Tudor, the Cardinals’ starter, pitched 10 shutout innings. Mets starter Ron Darling went nine innings and Jesse Orosco pitched the 10th.

In the 11th, Ken Dayley relieved Tudor and struck out the first two batters, Keith Hernandez and Gary Carter.

Darryl Strawberry batted next.

With the count 1-and-1, Dayley delivered a breaking pitch. Strawberry hit a towering drive that slammed into the scoreboard clock for a home run.

“He hit a curveball _ a hanging curveball,” Cardinals manager Whitey Herzog told Larry Harnly of The State Journal-Register of Springfield, Ill. Video

In the Cardinals’ half of the 11th, Orosco struck out Willie McGee. The next batter, Tommy Herr, lofted a fly ball to shallow center. Mookie Wilson got a late jump and attempted a basket catch, but dropped the ball for a two-base error.

Brian Harper, pinch-hitting for Darrell Porter, grounded out to second, advancing Herr to third with two outs.

Orosco ended the drama by getting Ivan De Jesus, pinch-hitting for Andy Van Slyke, to fly out to Wilson, giving the Mets a 1-0 victory.

“Tell me,” Mets manager Davey Johnson asked reporters in discussing the Strawberry home run, “is the clock still working?” Boxscore

Game 2

The pressure still was on the Mets, who trailed the Cardinals by two with five games remaining on Oct. 2.

The Mets responded to the challenge.

Starter Dwight Gooden went the distance. He allowed nine hits and issued four walks, but he struck out 10 and the Cardinals stranded 10.

The Mets scored five runs off Cardinals starter Joaquin Andujar and won, 5-2, slicing the St. Louis lead to one with four games to play.

In the bottom of the ninth, the Cardinals nearly rallied. Trailing 5-1, they scored a run and loaded the bases with two outs against Gooden.

“I knew he was tired and I knew it was draining him,” Johnson told reporters. “At the same time, I thought Gooden was our best bet. He bends a little, but he doesn’t break.”

The move nearly backfired.

Herr laced a line drive that was caught by second baseman Wally Backman, ending the game. Video

“When Herr first hit the ball, I thought it was going to be over Wally’s head,” Gooden said. “It was panic time.” Boxscore

Game 3

After the Mets won Game 2 of the series, Davey Johnson said, “We’ve done what we had to do so far. We’ve got two-thirds of the job done. The pressure is on them now.”

If the Mets won the Oct. 3 series finale, completing the sweep, they’d be tied with the Cardinals and would have the momentum.

Instead, the Cardinals won, 4-3. Vince Coleman was 3-for-4 with two RBI. Ozzie Smith contributed two hits, two runs and a RBI. Starter Danny Cox held the Mets to two runs in six innings and the bullpen, especially Ricky Horton and Jeff Lahti, preserved the lead.

Horton retired the last two batters of the eighth and the first two batters of the ninth before Hernandez singled, representing the tying run. It was Hernandez’s fifth hit of the game.

“He broke his bat on the hit,” Horton told Harnly. “It was a fastball down and in. He makes a living on hitting good pitches.”

Lahti relieved and faced Carter. “We figured Carter might be looking for a slider,” Lahti said. “I asked (catcher) Darrell Porter what he wanted and he wanted a fastball. I go along with his suggestions.”

Lahti’s first pitch was a fastball away. Carter swung and drove a fly ball to right. Said Lahti: “When Carter hit it, I was screaming, ‘Catch it. Catch it.’ He’s beaten me to right field before.”

The ball carried to Van Slyke, who made the catch, ending the game and giving the first-place Cardinals a two-game lead with three to play. Boxscore

Said Herr of the Mets to the San Diego Union-Tribune: “They’re like the bowler who needed three strikes in the 10th (frame) to win. They got the first two, but they left the 10-pin standing on the third.”

On Oct. 4, the Cardinals beat the Cubs (Bob Forsch over Dennis Eckersley) and the Mets defeated the Expos, leaving St. Louis two ahead with two to play.

The Cardinals clinched on Oct. 5, beating the Cubs Boxscore while the Mets lost to the Expos.

Previously: Cesar Cedeno and his amazing month with Cardinals

Randy Wiles was the pitcher the Cardinals traded to acquire Tony La Russa.

randy_wilesIn a deal made with the intention of jump-starting a pair of stalled minor-league careers, the Cardinals sent Wiles to the White Sox in exchange for La Russa on Dec. 15, 1976.

From there, the careers of the two players took different paths.

La Russa played one season as an infielder in the Cardinals system before beginning a long and successful second career as a manager, including 16 years (1996-2011) with St. Louis. His two World Series titles, three National League pennants and a franchise-leading 1,408 wins with the Cardinals helped get him elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

Wiles, a left-hander, pitched briefly with the White Sox in 1977, got traded back to the Cardinals after the season and was out of baseball by the end of 1978.

His death on Sept. 15, 2015, at age 64 prompted me to research his story and tell it here.

Good potential

Randy Wiles was selected by the Cardinals in the fifth round of the 1973 draft after earning all-Southeastern Conference honors at Louisiana State University.

He was drafted just ahead of another pitcher, LaMarr Hoyt, who went on to become a big-league all-star.

In his first two seasons in the Cardinals’ system, Wiles established himself as a prospect with big-league potential.

He spent 1973 with the Gulf Coast Cardinals (managed by Ken Boyer) and Class A St. Petersburg, posting a 2.81 ERA in 16 games.

In 1974, Wiles had one of the best seasons of any pitcher in the Cardinals organization, with eight wins and a 2.56 ERA in 30 games at Class AA Arkansas. Wiles won seven of his last eight decisions, yielding two runs for the month of August.

“Everything just clicked,” Wiles told The Sporting News. “I was consistent every time out.”

Reverse course

Wiles opened the 1975 season at Class AAA Tulsa, playing again for Boyer. Instead of positioning himself for a promotion to the big leagues, Wiles took a step back, posting a 5.92 ERA in 11 games.

“I was so inconsistent … I couldn’t keep the ball down,” said Wiles.

The Cardinals demoted him to Arkansas. Dejected, Wiles was 4-5 with a 3.45 ERA in 12 games for the Class AA club.

“I probably had an attitude problem when I was sent down to Arkansas from Tulsa,” Wiles said. “I tried to shake it, but I couldn’t. I gained a lot of weight, too. I wasn’t in shape.”

At spring training in 1976, Wiles pitched well. “I had the best spring I’ve ever had,” he said. “I gave up only one run. Ken Boyer said I would be with him (at Tulsa).”

Instead, the Cardinals sent Wiles to Arkansas. The Cardinals had signed a batch of former big-league pitchers _ Lloyd Allen, Roric Harrison, Lerrin LaGrow and Harry Parker _ and assigned them to Tulsa, leaving no spots available for Wiles.

Relying primarily on a fastball and slider, Wiles rebounded, with a 2.72 ERA in 21 games for Arkansas. “He should be in Tulsa,” said Arkansas manager Jack Krol. “He just got caught up in the numbers game this year. The organization is still high on him. He’s a good pitcher.”

Wiles did get promoted to Tulsa during the 1976 season and, reunited with Boyer, had a 3.90 ERA in 12 games.

Minor deal

After the season, his fourth in the Cardinals system, Wiles, 25, was traded to the White Sox for La Russa, who had batted .259 at Class AAA Iowa in 1976.

La Russa, 32, no longer was considered a big-league prospect, but he appealed to the Cardinals as a player-coach who could mentor infielders such as Jim Riggleman and Ken Oberkfell at Class AAA New Orleans.

“He was kind of looking out for me a little bit,” Riggleman said in the book, “Tony La Russa: Man on a Mission.” “He became like a big brother to me. He gave me a lot of advice and you knew there was a lot of respect for him among the players.”

The White Sox sent Wiles to Iowa for the 1977 season. In August, seeking a left-handed reliever, the White Sox promoted Wiles to the big leagues.

Wiles appeared in five games for Chicago, with a 1-1 record and 10.12 ERA. After two weeks with the White Sox, Wiles was placed on waivers and claimed by the Cardinals, who sent him to join La Russa in New Orleans.

After the season, the Cardinals traded Wiles again _ to the Astros for minor-league pitcher Ron Selak, a former Cardinals prospect who had been selected by St. Louis three rounds ahead of Wiles in the 1973 draft.

Meanwhile, the Cardinals talked with La Russa about becoming manager of their rookie league club at Johnson City, Tenn. Though flattered, La Russa said he’d rather seek a position at a higher level of the minor leagues.

In 1978, Wiles, 27, pitched his final season of professional baseball, with the Astros’ Class AAA club in Charleston, W.Va. La Russa launched his career as a manager that season, with the Class AA Knoxville affiliate of the White Sox. A year later, La Russa, 34, became White Sox manager.

Previously: The story of how Tony La Russa got his 1st Cards win

Previously: Tony La Russa and the night he got to be No. 3

At each significant step in the Cardinals career of pitcher Barney Schultz, Johnny Keane played a prominent role.

barney_schultz2Keane was the minor-league manager who helped Schultz reach the majors for the first time with the 1955 Cardinals. Eight years later, when Schultz was placed on waivers by the 1963 Cubs, Keane, then manager of the Cardinals, convinced general manager Bing Devine to make the deal that returned Schultz to St. Louis. A year later, in August 1964, when the Cardinals appeared to have slipped out of contention, Keane made Schultz the closer. The knuckleball specialist rewarded his mentor with a stretch of outstanding relief that carried St. Louis to a National League pennant and a World Series championship.

After his playing career, Schultz remained with the Cardinals as a minor-league instructor and then pitching coach on the big-league staff of manager Red Schoendienst.

Schultz, 89, died on Sept. 6, 2015, in his native New Jersey.

His story is one of how being prepared for opportunity and not giving up can lead to success.

Long journey

Schultz was 17 when he debuted as a professional player in the Phillies system in 1944. The right-hander played for five organizations _ Phillies, Tigers, Braves, Cubs and Pirates _ without getting to the big leagues.

After the 1953 season, Schultz was acquired by the Cardinals from the Pirates’ Denver farm club. The Denver executive who made the deal was Bob Howsam.

The Cardinals assigned Schultz to their Class AAA club in Columbus, Ohio, for 1954. The Columbus manager was Keane.

Schultz, 27, no longer was considered a prime prospect. Keane decided to use him mostly in relief. Schultz posted an 8-8 record and 3.86 ERA in 41 games for Columbus. “Barney had a good fastball then, too, and I’d urge him to use it often with his knuckler,” Keane told The Sporting News.

Convinced that Schultz had found his role as a reliever, Keane recommended that the Cardinals give Schultz a good look at spring training in 1955. The Cardinals agreed and Schultz delivered. At 28, he made the Opening Day roster of the 1955 Cardinals, joining another rookie knuckleball pitcher, Bobby Tiefenauer, in the bullpen.

In 19 games with the Cardinals, Schultz was 1-2 with four saves and a 7.89 ERA. On June 16, about three weeks after Harry Walker had replaced Eddie Stanky as manager, Schultz was demoted by the Cardinals to their Class AA Houston affiliate. He was 5-7 with a 3.46 ERA there for manager Mike Ryba.

Back with Keane

Schultz spent the next two seasons, 1956 and ’57, playing for Keane with the Cardinals’ Class AAA club at Omaha. He was 9-12 with a 4.19 ERA in 1956 and 8-7 with a 2.83 ERA in 1957.

Schultz, 31, began his third consecutive season under Keane with Omaha in 1958. His career clearly was stalled. On May 26, 1958, the Cardinals traded him to the Tigers for Ben Mateosky, a minor-league outfielder.

Freed from the Cardinals’ organization, Schultz worked his way back to the big leagues. He pitched for the 1959 Tigers and then for the Cubs from 1961-63.

In June 1963, the Cubs placed Schultz, 36, on waivers. Keane, in his third season as Cardinals manager, urged Devine to acquire the pitcher. The Cardinals submitted a bid to claim Schultz on waivers, then sweetened the deal by offering utility player Leo Burke in exchange. On June 24, 1963, the transaction was made, reuniting Schultz with Keane and the Cardinals.

“We had talked about Schultz all spring,” Devine said. “We were the only ones to put in a bid for him when the Cubs asked waivers on him.”

The only players remaining on the 1963 Cardinals who were with St. Louis when Schultz debuted in 1955 were Stan Musial, Ken Boyer and Schoendienst.

Schultz was 2-0 with a save and a 3.57 ERA in 24 games for the 1963 Cardinals, who placed second in the NL to the Dodgers.

Closer in waiting

Based on their 1963 performances, the Cardinals were expected to contend in 1964 and Schultz, with his connections and experience, was considered a probable fit for the bullpen. Instead, the Cardinals sent Schultz to Class AAA Jacksonville before leaving spring training. The Cardinals sputtered and by mid-June their record was below .500.

Schultz, meanwhile, was pitching spectacularly for Jacksonville and his former Cardinals manager, Harry Walker. Schultz had an 8-5 record and 1.05 ERA in 42 games when the Cardinals recalled him from Jacksonville on July 31, 1964 _ two weeks before his 38th birthday.

Reunited again with Keane, Schultz yielded no runs in his first nine appearances for the 1964 Cardinals, earning five saves in that stretch.

Meanwhile, impatient Cardinals owner Gussie Busch fired Devine and replaced him with Howsam, who had sent Schultz to the Cardinals a decade earlier.

With Schultz confidently protecting leads and closing out games, the Cardinals rallied to win the pennant on the final day of the regular season. Schultz had six saves in his final eight appearances, all scoreless. Overall, Schultz was 1-3 with 14 saves and a 1.64 ERA in 30 games over the last two months of the 1964 season for St. Louis.

After the Cardinals defeated the Yankees in a seven-game World Series, Keane resigned and became Yankees manager.

Pitching for rookie manager Schoendienst, Schultz was 2-2 with two saves and a 3.83 ERA in 34 games for the 1965 Cardinals before he was demoted to Jacksonville.

In 1966, Schultz was a player-coach for the Cardinals’ minor-league Tulsa team. He was a Cardinals minor-league instructor from 1967-70 and served as Cardinals pitching coach under Schoendienst from 1971-75. Among those who praised him as a mentor were Cardinals pitchers Bob Forsch and John Denny.

In 1977, Schultz was pitching coach for the Cubs. His prize pupil was Bruce Sutter, who developed into a standout closer under Schultz and capped a Hall of Fame career by helping the Cardinals win the 1982 World Series title.

Previously: Why the Cardinals played baseball in Delaware on D-Day

Previously: 20th win for Ray Sadecki put 1964 Cardinals into 1st place

Previously: 5-game sweep of Pirates positioned Cardinals for pennant


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