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When 17-year-old Tim McCarver made his big-league debut with the Cardinals in September 1959, the everyday catcher he hoped to replace someday was an all-star with a powerful arm and a reputation for handling a pitching staff well.

hal_r_smithThough his Cardinals career wasn’t the caliber of successors such as McCarver, Ted Simmons and Yadier Molina, Hal Smith was regarded as one of the best catchers in the National League when he played for St. Louis.

“Hal Smith was a fair hitter and great defensive catcher,” McCarver said in the book “We Played The Game” (1994, Hyperion).

Smith, 82, died April 12, 2014, in his native Arkansas.

In the 1950s and 1960s, there were two players named Hal Smith in the major leagues and both were catchers.

Harold Wayne Smith, known as Hal, played for the Orioles, Athletics, Pirates, Colt .45s and Reds from 1955-64 and hit a three-run home run for Pittsburgh against the Yankees in the eighth inning of Game 7 of the 1960 World Series.

Harold Raymond Smith, also known as Hal, played for the Cardinals from 1956-61 and briefly for the Pirates in 1965.

“I liked when Hal Smith caught me,” said Tom Cheney, who pitched for the Cardinals in 1957 and 1959. “He was one of the best catchers in baseball. We were in synch … Vets like Smith really knew the hitters and you could depend on them.”

Taught by the best

After six seasons (1949-55) in the Cardinals’ minor-league system, including two at Omaha under manager George Kissell, Smith debuted with St. Louis in 1956. He established himself as an all-star in his second season, 1957, by hitting .279, ranking fourth in assists among National League catchers and committing just five errors in 795 innings. (Smith did lead the league in passed balls, primarily because the Cardinals had knuckleball specialist Hoyt Wilhelm.)

On May 8, 1957, Smith was 3-for-5 with 6 RBI, including a two-run home run, in the Cardinals’ 13-4 victory over the Giants at New York. Boxscore

According to The Sporting News, Smith fell into disfavor with Cardinals manager Fred Hutchinson early in 1958 for being overweight and having a sore arm.

When Solly Hemus replaced Huchinson for the 1959 season, he had Smith and Gene Green compete in spring training for the starting job. Smith won the role and earned the respect of his manager.

“You just can’t give enough credit to Hal Smith for the pitching improvement (of the Cardinals),” Hemus told The Sporting News in April 1959. “He takes charge out there and quickly gains the confidence of his pitchers.

“Defensively, I’ll rate Smitty right up with Del Crandall of Milwaukee. With that strong, accurate arm of his, Smitty isn’t going to let many runners steal on him this season. He can hit .220 or .230 and be my regular catcher.”

Smith hit .270 with 13 home runs and 50 RBI for the 1959 Cardinals and earned all-star status for his all-around play.

Slugging for Sharon

On May 9, 1959, Smith hit two home runs _ a three-run shot off Glen Hobbie and a two-run shot off Joe Schaffernoth _ in the Cardinals’ 11-1 victory over the Cubs at St. Louis. Boxscore

According to The Sporting News, Smith “wasn’t even ticketed to start the game because he and his wife earlier were forced to rush daughter Sharon to DePaul Hospital.”

It was feared Sharon had a kidney ailment that would require surgery. When it was discovered the girl had a minor kidney infection and no surgery was required, Smith told Hemus he was ready to play and Hemus inserted Smith into the lineup. Relieved to learn of his daughter’s improved health, Smith responded with the only two-homer game of his big-league career.

Smith led National League catchers in highest percentage of runners caught attempting to steal in both 1959 and 1960. He threw out 32 of 76 attempted base stealers (42 percent) in 1959 and 34 of 66 (52 percent) in 1960.

In 1962, Smith became a coach on the staff of Cardinals manager Johnny Keane. The next year, McCarver, 21, replaced Gene Oliver as the Cardinals’ everyday catcher and helped them to three pennants and two World Series championships.

Cardinals connections helped Smith continue his coaching career. He coached for the 1965-67 Pirates staff of manager Harry Walker, who was a Cardinals coach from 1959-62.

After coaching for the 1968-69 Reds under manager Dave Bristol (the Reds then were run by former Cardinals general manager Bob Howsam), Smith was a coach for the 1976-77 Brewers staff of manager Alex Grammas, his teammate with the 1956 and 1959-61 Cardinals. Smith then returned to the Cardinals and was a scout for them for several years.

Previously: George Kissell, Cardinals inspired Joe Torre to be a manager

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Two years after his professional baseball debut at the Class C level of the minor leagues, Tom Alston was the Opening Day first baseman for the Cardinals. Making that leap in such a short time would be a challenge for any prospect. Alston had the additional pressure of being the first black person to play for the Cardinals.

tom_alstonSixty years ago, on April 13, 1954, Thomas Edison Alston broke the Cardinals’ color barrier, batting sixth and playing first base against the Cubs at St. Louis.

Seven seasons after Jackie Robinson joined the Dodgers, the Cardinals became the 10th of the 16 major-league teams to integrate.

Alston, 28, was the 14th black player in the Cardinals’ organization, but the only one on the big-league roster. (Among the other blacks in the Cardinals’ system in 1954 were pitchers Bill Greason, Brooks Lawrence and John Wyatt. All eventually would pitch in the big leagues.)

Rapid rise

Alston’s rise from baseball novice to Cardinals pioneer was fast and unexpected. After serving in the Navy from 1945-47, Alston enrolled at North Carolina A&T in his native Greensboro and earned a bachelor of science degree in physical education and social sciences. It was while in college that Alston, 6-foot-5 and 210 pounds, first played organized baseball.

In 1952, he broke into professional baseball with Porterville, Calif., of the Class C Southwest International League, and hit .353 in 54 games. That caught the attention of the San Diego club of the Class AAA Pacific Coast League.

Alston joined San Diego midway through the 1952 season and hit .244 in 78 games.

In 1953, Alston put together a stellar season for San Diego. He had 207 hits in 180 games, with 101 runs scored, 23 home runs, 101 RBI and a .297 batting average. Cardinals scouts gave Alston rave reviews.

On Jan. 26, 1954, the Cardinals sent first baseman Dick Sisler, pitcher Eddie Erautt and $100,000 to San Diego for Alston. San Diego manager Lefty O’Doul called Alston “a great prospect who can field as good as any first baseman in the big leagues.”

“Alston looks like he’s going to be a great hitter, too,” O’Doul told The Sporting News.

Said Cardinals owner August Busch Jr.: “When we purchased the Cardinals, I promised there would be no racial discrimination. However, Alston was not purchased because of his race. Our scouts and manager Eddie Stanky believe he is a great prospect. While he may need more experience, we didn’t want him to slip away from us.”

Bill Starr, president of the San Diego club, offered to cut the cash portion of the deal to $75,000 if the Cardinals would wait until 1955 to take Alston, according to the Los Angeles Daily Mirror. But the Cardinals wanted Alston for 1954. The incumbent at first base was Steve Bilko, who hit 21 home runs for the 1953 Cardinals but also led the National League in striking out (125 times). The Cardinals used spring training in 1954 as a competition between Alston and Bilko for the first base job.

“I think we have a real ballplayer in this colored boy,” Stanky said to The Sporting News in March 1954.

Said Alston: “They treat me here just the same as any other ballplayer and that’s how I want to be treated.”

Major leaguer

Stanky declared he’d platoon Alston (a left-handed batter) and Bilko (a right-handed batter). But Alston got the Opening Day start against Cubs left-hander Paul Minner.

“I guess I’ve come a long way in a short time,” Alston said to The Sporting News. “I guess I came up like a real rocket.”

Alston went 0-for-4 with a strikeout and committed an error in his debut game. Boxscore

In his next game, April 17, 1954, at Chicago, Alston went hitless in his first four at-bats. In the eighth, he led off with a home run, his first big-league hit, against Cubs reliever Jim Brosnan. Boxscore

The next day, April 18, Alston got his second hit, a pinch-hit, three-run homer off left-hander Jim Davis that lifted the Cardinals to a 6-4 triumph. Boxscore

On April 30, the Cardinals sent Bilko to the Cubs. Alston was the everyday first baseman.

In a doubleheader against the Giants on May 2, Alston was 5-for-6 with 5 RBI, an inside-the-park home run and 3 walks. His performance was overshadowed that day, however, by teammate Stan Musial, who hit 5 home runs with 9 RBI. Game 1 boxscore Game 2 boxscore

In The Sporting News, Bob Broeg wrote of Alston’s inside-the-park home run: “His speed enabled him to circle the bases easily after Willie Mays misjudged his long wind-blown drive to left-center.”

Slowed by slump

Alston hit .301 (37-for-123) in May and was at .285 overall on May 30, but he slumped in June, enduring a 2-for-27 stretch and batting .181 (15-for-83) for the month. He had just 7 RBI in his last 42 games.

On June 30, the Cardinals sent Alston to Class AAA Rochester and called up another rookie, Joe Cunningham, to replace him at first base.

Alston hit .210 in Cardinals home games; .280 on the road. He batted .268 against right-handers; .197 versus left-handers. His overall numbers for the 1954 Cardinals: 60 hits in 66 games, 14 doubles, 4 home runs, 34 RBI and a .246 batting average. He made 62 starts at first base.

Said Cardinals general manager Dick Meyer: “Alston wasn’t ready … Eddie (Stanky) and I still have a very high regard for Alston as a prospect.”

After replacing Alston, Cunningham hit .284 with 11 home runs in 85 games for the 1954 Cardinals. The next season, the Cardinals moved Musial from the outfield to first base.

Alston made brief appearances with the Cardinals in 1955, 1956 and 1957. In 91 big-league games, all with St. Louis, Alston had 66 hits and a .244 batting average.

Ten years after Alston’s big-league debut, the Cardinals would become World Series champions, building a reputation as a franchise that embraced diversity with players such as Bob Gibson, Bill White, Curt Flood, Lou Brock and Julian Javier.

Underappreciated, Tom Alston took the first steps toward making that possible.

Previously: The debut of Bill Greason, first black Cardinals pitcher

Greensboro newspaper: Illness curtailed Tom Alston’s career with Cardinals

St. Louis newspaper: In remembering Jackie Robinson, remember Tom Alston, too

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Uncertain whether outfielder Enos Slaughter could adjust to being a role player for them after 13 seasons as a standout, the Cardinals decided it was better to trade him.

enos_slaughter3In hindsight, the deal benefitted both Slaughter and the Cardinals. At the time, though, the trade was considered stunning and controversial. Caught off-guard, Slaughter and teammate Stan Musial broke into tears.

Sixty years ago, on April 11, 1954, the Cardinals sent Slaughter to the Yankees for three prospects who hadn’t played in the major leagues: outfielders Bill Virdon and Emil Tellinger and pitcher Mel Wright.

The trade occurred two weeks before Slaughter turned 38. He was the Cardinals team captain, a 10-time all-star who, at the time, held the team record for games played (1,820) and RBI (1,148). Slaughter had joined the Cardinals in 1938 and helped them to a World Series championship in 1942. After three years in the service, he returned to the Cardinals in 1946 and led them to another World Series title.

In 13 seasons with the Cardinals, Slaughter batted .305 with 2,064 hits and an on-base percentage of .384. Known for his all-out hustle, he twice led the National League in triples (17 in 1942 and 13 in 1949). In 1942, he was the league leader in hits (188) and total bases (292). He also had led the league in RBI (130 in 1946) and doubles (52 in 1939).

At 37, he still was a force. In 143 games for the 1953 Cardinals, Slaughter produced 143 hits, 34 doubles, 89 RBI, a .291 batting average and .395 on-base percentage as the everyday right fielder.

Youth movement

Slaughter went to spring training camp in St. Petersburg, Fla., in 1954 expecting to be a regular again in an outfield with Musial and Rip Repulski. Late in spring training, though, Cardinals manager Eddie Stanky told The Sporting News, “I’ll be satisfied if we can get 75 to 90 games out of the captain.”

Reports surfaced that Slaughter was grousing about the possibility of becoming a role player. Whether that was the normal grumbling of a proud veteran who didn’t want to concede playing time, or whether it was a tone of dark dissent that threatened to divide the team isn’t certain.

The Cardinals, though, weren’t taking any chances that Slaughter’s part-time playing status could create rifts. They wanted rookie Wally Moon to be the starting center fielder, moving Musial from left to right and Repulski from center to left.

After an exhibition game, general manager Dick Meyer and Stanky informed Slaughter of the trade. Slaughter stunned Meyer and Stanky when he began to sob.

“It’s the greatest shock I ever had in my life,” Slaughter told The Sporting News of the trade.

Crying game

In his book “Stan Musial: The Man’s Own Story” (1964, Doubleday), Musial wrote, “In the clubhouse, when the rest of us got the word, we were stunned. Dressing even more slowly than usual, I was the last one out. At the lot where I parked my car … I found Slaughter, still wiping his eyes. We looked at each other _ and both burst into tears.”

In justifying the trade, Stanky said to The Sporting News: “A player like Slaughter just can’t stand sitting on a bench.”

According to newspaper reports, the trade was the most unpopular with Cardinals fans since St. Louis traded Rogers Hornsby to the Giants after winning the 1926 World Series championship.

St. Louis writers reflected the mood of their readers. Among the tributes to Slaughter:

_ Bob Broeg in The Sporting News: “There never was a more determined competitor or hustler than the last of the old Gashouse Gang _ a hard runner, brilliant outfielder, clutch hitter.”

_ Bob Burnes in the St. Louis Globe-Democrat: “Slaughter was more than a ballplayer, as any Cardinals fan could tell you. He was an institution _ not only among the fans but among the players as well.”

_ J. Roy Stockton in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: “Enos was the best competitor the club had. He still was a standout for batting skill and hustle.”

Desperate move?

The Yankees, who had an outfield of Gene Woodling in left, Mickey Mantle in center and Hank Bauer in right in 1954, were delighted with the deal for Slaughter. “We gave up practically nothing for him, so why not take him?” Yankees co-owner Del Webb told The Sporting News.

But other baseball executives saw Slaughter as a fading talent. The Sporting News polled the seven National League general managers besides Meyer and each said he wasn’t interested in pursuing a deal with the Cardinals for Slaughter.

Buzzy Bavasi of the Dodgers, who were planning to break in rookie Sandy Amoros into an outfield with Duke Snider and Carl Furillo, said, “Personally, I wouldn’t take Slaughter over Amoros, would you?”

In response to the Yankees, Frank Lane, general manager of the American League White Sox, scoffed, “You can’t pack Old Man Time on your back and still be a great ballplayer … It was a desperate move by them.”

Actually, it was a good move for the Cardinals and Yankees.

Moon hit a home run in his first at-bat for the Cardinals on Opening Day and went on to win the 1954 National League Rookie of the Year Award. Primarily the Cardinals’ starting center fielder that year, he had 193 hits in 151 games, with 106 runs scored, 18 steals, a .304 batting average and a .371 on-base percentage.

The next year, Virdon came up to the Cardinals and won the 1955 National League Rookie of the Year Award.

Slaughter, meanwhile, adjusted well to being a role player with the Yankees. He hit .355 (11-for-31) with 12 walks as a pinch-hitter for the 1954 Yankees. He played in the major leagues until 1959 and appeared in three World Series (1956, 1957 and 1958) for the Yankees, earning election into the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

Previously: Cardinals rookie Enos Slaughter set torrid extra-hit pace

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Scott Cooper enjoyed a storybook start to his Cardinals career. It didn’t have a happy ending, though.

scott_cooperCooper, a St. Louis native and lifelong resident, is one of four major-league players in the last 30 years to get a walkoff RBI in a season opener in his debut with a team, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

Alex Gonzalez most recently achieved that feat on March 31, 2014, for the Tigers. Others to do so in the last 30 years are Gary Carter with the 1985 Mets and Joe Randa with the 2005 Reds.

On April 26, 1995, two weeks after he was dealt to St. Louis by the Red Sox, Cooper lifted the Cardinals to a 7-6 Opening Day victory over the Phillies at Busch Stadium II.

Playing third base and batting fourth, Cooper was 3-for-5 with 4 RBI.

In his first plate appearance for the Cardinals, Cooper struck out against Curt Schilling. “My first at-bat I was more nervous than any at-bat in my life,” Cooper said to the Springfield (Ill.) State Journal-Register. “I have played in front of 50 million fans in the All-Star Game, but in that first at-bat I had problems getting down to the basics.”

In the ninth inning, with the Phillies ahead, 6-5, the Cardinals loaded the bases with none out against Norm Charlton. Bernard Gilkey sparked the rally with a single. Ozzie Smith and Ray Lankford each followed with a four-pitch walk.

Cooper, acquired along with reliever Cory Bailey in a April 9, 1995, trade for pitcher Rheal Cormier and outfielder Mark Whiten, stepped to the plate with the chance to be a hometown hero. He had supplied 40 tickets to the game for friends and family, including his mother, father, sister and two brothers.

The first two pitches Charlton delivered to Cooper nearly hit the batter. He fouled off a pitch, then grounded the next past diving first baseman Dave Hollins for a single into right field, scoring Gilkey and Smith. Boxscore

Cardinals fans chanted “Cooop” in tribute.

“I’ve probably dreamed up 50,000 different scenarios for how this game would go,” Cooper said to the Associated Press. “But I probably couldn’t have written it any better.”

Said Cardinals manager Joe Torre: “He knows he’s up there to knock in runs. He was up there swinging. That’s very aggressive and I like that.”

After a fast start _ he was batting .325 on May 17 _ Cooper tailed off as the season progressed. A .284 hitter in five years with the Red Sox, Cooper batted .230 in 118 games for the Cardinals. He had almost as many strikeouts (85) as hits (86).

Granted free agency after the season, Cooper played in Japan in 1996. He returned to the big leagues with the 1997 Royals in his final season as a player.

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Ken Oberkfell got called up to the Cardinals in the second half of 1978, didn’t hit, began pressing and never did achieve his potential in his brief trial that year. The next season, Oberkfell, relaxed but aggressive, became the Cardinals’ starting second baseman and enjoyed a successful rookie year.

ken_oberkfell2Kolten Wong got called up to the Cardinals in the second half of 2013, didn’t hit, began pressing and never did achieve his potential in his brief trial that year. In 2014, Wong, relaxed but aggressive, opens the season as the Cardinals’ starting second baseman.

Though different in their playing styles, Wong appears poised to have the best rookie season for a Cardinals starting second baseman since Oberkfell in 1979.

Wong, a left-handed batter, hit .153 (9-for-59) after being promoted to the Cardinals in August 2013. But he has been one of the Cardinals’ top hitters in 2014 spring training games, hitting .375 and ranking among the Grapefruit League leaders.

Oberkfell, a left-handed batter, hit .120 (6-for-50) after being promoted to the Cardinals in July 1978. But he was one of the Cardinals’ top hitters in 1979 spring training games, hitting better than .300.

Unlike Wong, Oberkfell didn’t have the starting second base job when the 1979 season opened. That belonged to veteran Mike Tyson. But Oberkfell impressed manager Ken Boyer by going 4-for-4 (three singles and a triple) in an April 22, 1979, game against the Reds. Boxscore

“I had one four-hit day in the minors, but it wasn’t nearly as big a thrill as this,” Oberkfell said to The Sporting News.

In May 1979, Boyer began platooning Oberkfell with Tyson, a right-handed batter. Fighting to remain a starter, Tyson tried switch-hitting in June. But Boyer allowed Tyson to hit left-handed only when the Cardinals were ahead, or when the score was tied, in games Tyson started as a right-handed batter. Oberkfell got the starts versus right-handed pitching.

“I don’t think he (Tyson) is as good a hitter left-handed as Oberkfell yet,” Boyer said.

Oberkfell “has fielded almost flawlessly,” wrote Rick Hummel in The Sporting News. When Tyson stretched ligaments in his left knee, Oberkfell became the full-fledged starter for the last third of the season.

“I’ve always had the attitude that I’d be the Cardinals second baseman some day,” Oberkfell told Hummel. “It’s a great feeling playing for the Cardinals … The key to me this year (1979) is being more aggressive and more relaxed.”

Oberkfell led National League second basemen in fielding percentage (.985) in 1979. He made eight errors in 875.1 innings at second base and turned 65 double plays. Hummel cited Oberkfell for “standing in strongly on the double play.”

Oberkfell also batted .301 in 135 games in 1979. His .396 on-base percentage was the best of his 16 years in the major leagues. He hit .305 against right-handers and .287 versus left-handers.

Tyson was traded to the Cubs for reliever Donnie Moore after the 1979 season and Oberkfell remained the Cardinals’ everyday second baseman in 1980.

In 1981, the Cardinals made Tommy Herr the starter at second base and moved Oberkfell to third base, where he replaced Ken Reitz, who was traded to the Cubs in the deal that brought closer Bruce Sutter to St. Louis.

Oberkfell led National League third basemen in fielding percentage in 1982 (.972) and 1983 (.960). He and Herr and Sutter were key players in the Cardinals’ 1982 World Series championship season.

For another perspective about Wong and the history of Cardinals rookie second basemen, check out this good read from Craig Edwards of Viva El Birdos.

Previously: From Les Bell to David Freese: Cardinals 3rd base champions

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(Updated March 31, 2014)

Opening Day games between the Cardinals and Reds have brought out the best in several St. Louis standouts. Stan Musial, Chick Hafey, Albert Pujols and Yadier Molina have slugged Cardinals home runs against the Reds in season openers. Dizzy Dean, Grover Cleveland Alexander, Mort Cooper and Adam Wainwright have pitched gems.

albert_pujols22The Cardinals opened their 2014 season on March 31 with a 1-0 victory over the Reds at Cincinnati. It was the third time in the last 20 years that the Reds were the Opening Day opponent of the Cardinals.

In the last 100 years, the Cardinals have played the Reds in their season opener 18 times. The Cardinals have won five of the last six. The last time the Reds won an opener versus St. Louis was 1988.

Starting with the most recent, a look at the Opening Day games between the Cardinals and Reds since 1914:

March 31, 2014

_ Cardinals 1, Reds 0: Molina hit a home run off Johnny Cueto and Wainwright struck out nine in seven scoreless innings. Boxscore

April 5, 2010

_ Cardinals 11, Reds 6: Pujols hit a pair of home runs (one off starter Aaron Harang and the other against Mike Lincoln) and Molina hit his first big-league grand slam (off Nick Masset). The only other Cardinals who hit grand slams on Opening Day: Mark McGwire (1998) and Scott Rolen (2006).

Wrote columnist Bernie Miklasz of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch: “It was one of those days that opponents hate to see. Pujols locked in. Pujols with some extra glare to his stare. Pujols at his boldest best. The Pujols that treats a huge day as a routine day.” Boxscore

April 3, 1994

_ Cardinals 6, Reds 4: On Easter Sunday night, Ray Lankford, the first batter of the season, lined a home run off Jose Rijo.

It was the first time a Cardinal had hit a homer in the first inning of the first game since Darrell Porter launched a three-run shot off Houston’s Nolan Ryan on April 6, 1982.

“I was just anxious to get going,” Lankford said. “… I started thinking about being the first batter of ’94. I wanted to do something. I couldn’t have asked for anything better than that to open the season.” Boxscore

April 4, 1988

_ Reds 5, Cardinals 4, 12 innings: Joe Magrane, the Cardinals’ starting pitcher, hit a three-run home run off Mario Soto. But Kal Daniels knocked in the winning run with a two-out looping single that barely eluded center fielder Willie McGee.

“I gave it all I had,” McGee told the Post-Dispatch. “Maybe if I had dived, I might have caught it.” Boxscore

April 16, 1957

_ Cardinals 13, Reds 4: Del Ennis and Wally Moon each drove in three runs and Herm Wehmeier, a Cincinnati native and former Red, pitched a complete game. Boxscore

April 17, 1956

_ Cardinals 4, Reds 2: With two outs in the ninth and the score tied at 2-2, Red Schoendienst got a scratch single and Stan Musial followed with a home run off Joe Nuxhall. Boxscore

April 19, 1949

_ Reds 3, Cardinals 1: Ken Raffensberger pitched a five-hitter in an opener that took just 1:49 to complete. Boxscore

April 20, 1948

_ Cardinals 4, Reds 0: Murry Dickson scattered 10 hits in pitching the shutout. (Note: This was the Cardinals’ season opener and was played at St. Louis. The Reds opened their season the day before at Cincinnati versus the Pirates.) Boxscore

April 15, 1947

_ Reds 3, Cardinals 1: Ewell Blackwell pitched a three-hitter. Musial, Schoendienst and Enos Slaughter were a combined 0-for-10. Boxscore

April 21, 1943

_ Reds 1, Cardinals 0, 11 innings: Starting pitchers Johnny Vander Meer of the Reds and Mort Cooper of the Cardinals both pitched complete games. Cooper pitched 10 shutout innings. Vander Meer did him one better. The Cardinals managed two hits _ singles by Frank Demaree and Whitey Kurowski. Boxscore

April 15, 1941

_ Cardinals 7, Reds 3: Lon Warneke pitched a complete game and three Cardinals (Slaughter, Johnny Mize and Ernie Koy) slammed home runs. Boxscore

April 20, 1937

_ Cardinals 2, Reds 0, 10 innings: Dizzy Dean pitched a shutout despite yielding 13 hits and two walks. The Reds stranded 14. Boxscore

April 14, 1931

_ Cardinals 7, Reds 3: Jimmie Wilson, the Cardinals’ catcher and No. 8 batter, had three hits and a RBI. Boxscore

April 16, 1929

_ Cardinals 5, Reds 2: Two future Hall of Famers, Chick Hafey and Grover Cleveland Alexander, carried the Cardinals. Hafey had four RBI and a home run. Alexander, 42, pitched a five-hitter. Boxscore

April 14, 1925

_ Reds 4, Cardinals 0: Pete Donohue pitched the shutout, limiting the Cardinals to six singles. Boxscore

April 17, 1923

_ Reds 3, Cardinals 2, 11 innings: Donohue yielded 13 hits but earned the complete-game win. Rogers Hornsby was 0-for-5 for the Cardinals. Boxscore

April 23, 1919

_ Reds 6, Cardinals 2: Morrie Rath, the Reds’ leadoff batter and second baseman, had two hits, two walks and scored a run. Boxscore

April 11, 1917

_ Reds 3, Cardinals 1: Pete Schneider pitched a four-hitter. Hornsby, playing shortstop, had a hit and a walk. Boxscore

Previously: The story of Herm Wehmeier: 0-14 versus Cardinals

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