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An impressive collection of managerial talent participated in an important game in the evolution of the Cardinals.

One hundred years ago, on July 1, 1920, the Cardinals played a regular-season home game at Sportsman’s Park in St. Louis for the first time.

In addition to managers Branch Rickey of the Cardinals and George Gibson of the Pirates, seven of the players in the game went on to manage in the big leagues.

Moving in

The Cardinals had been playing their home games at dilapidated Robison Field until club owner Sam Breadon convinced his counterpart with the American League Browns, Sportsman’s Park landlord Phil Ball, to take in the cash-strapped Cardinals as a tenant.

The move to renting at Sportsman’s Park enabled Breadon to demolish Robison Field and sell most of the property to the city of St. Louis for $200,000 and sell the rest of the land for $75,000 to a trolley company.

On June 6, 1920, a Sunday afternoon, the Cardinals played their last game at Robison Field before going on a road trip for the rest of the month. Boxscore.

When the Cardinals got back from the trip, their first game at Sportsman’s Park was scheduled for a Thursday afternoon against the Pirates.

Attracting a crowd

The Pirates vs. Cardinals game was the feature of a program of events held at Sportsman’s Park that day to benefit the St. Louis Tuberculosis Society.

Described by the St. Louis Star-Times as an “athletic carnival.” the program included a five-inning matchup between Army and Navy baseball teams and the completion of a high school boys’ road run. The Navy beat the Army, 7-5. The game between the Pirates and Cardinals was scheduled to follow at 4 p.m.

According to an advertisement in The Sporting News, the price for a ticket to the day’s entire program ranged from 50 cents to $1.50.

Customers poured into Sportsman’s Park early. By 2 p.m., “the reserved seats were taken,” the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

Those with tickets for unreserved seats, referred to by the Post-Dispatch as “the unseated mob,” preferred standing room on the field to the “sun-baked bleachers” and they “swarmed into roped off areas” on both sides of left and right fields.

When the Pirates-Cardinals game began, attendance was 20,000, the Star-Times estimated.

Lots of leaders

The lineups for the Pirates and Cardinals featured these future big-league managers:

_ Pirates center fielder Max Carey, who became manager of the Dodgers (1932-33).

_ Pirates right fielder Billy Southworth, who became manager of the Cardinals (1929 and 1940-45) and Braves (1946-51). Southworth managed the Cardinals to three National League pennants and two World Series titles. He also won a pennant with the Braves.

_ Pirates shortstop Bill McKechnie, who became manager of the Pirates (1922-26), Cardinals (1928-29), Braves (1930-37) and Reds (1938-46). McKechnie managed the Cardinals to the 1928 pennant. He also won a pennant and World Series title with the Pirates, and two pennants and a World Series championship with the Reds.

_ Pirates first baseman Charlie Grimm, a St. Louis native who became manager of the Cubs (1932-38, 1944-49 and 1960) and Braves (1952-56). Grimm managed the Cubs to three pennants.

_ Cardinals left fielder Burt Shotton, who became manager of the Phillies (1928-33), Reds (1934) and Dodgers (1947-50). Shotton managed the Dodgers to two pennants.

_ Cardinals second baseman Rogers Hornsby, who became manager of the Cardinals (1925-26), Giants (1927), Braves (1928), Cubs (1930-32), Browns (1933-37 and 1952) and Reds (1952-53). Hornsby managed the Cardinals to their first pennant and World Series title in 1926.

_ Cardinals third baseman Milt Stock, who managed the Pirates for one game in 1951 and was a longtime coach in the majors.

Five of the participants in the game _ Carey, Hornsby, McKechnie, Rickey and Southworth _ would be inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Carey and Hornsby got in as players, Southworth and McKechnie as managers and Rickey as an administrator.

Pirates prevail

The Pirates led, 2-0, through seven innings, but the Cardinals got a run in the eighth and another in the ninth, tying the score at 2-2.

In the 10th, Cardinals starter Ferdie Schupp was relieved by Bill Sherdel, whose “slants were eaten up like hot waffles,” according to the Pittsburgh Daily Post.

Carey led off with a single to left and Southworth struck out looking. Possum Whitted singled to right and Carey dashed to third, beating the throw of right fielder Joe Schultz.

Whitted rounded first on the play, drawing a throw from third baseman Milt Stock. Carey broke for home as Stock’s throw went to first baseman Jack Fournier. Whitted got back to the bag safely and Fournier hurried a throw toward home plate, hoping to nail Carey.

“Fournier should have had him by 40 feet,” the Pittsburgh Press declared, but the low toss eluded catcher Verne Clemons. As the ball rolled toward a dugout, Carey crossed the plate, putting the Pirates ahead, 3-2, and Whitted went to third.

Rattled, Sherdel walked McKechnie. Grimm doubled to center, scoring Whitted and giving the Pirates a 4-2 lead. The Pirates scored twice more against Sherdel and went on to a 6-2 victory. Boxscore

Though the outcome of their first game at Sportman’s Park wasn’t what the Cardinals wanted, the move there was hailed as a positive for the franchise.

In its July 8, 1920, edition, The Sporting News reported, “Everyone seems happy over the shift of the Cards to the Browns’ park. The attendance at the games played there has been all that could be asked for by the club management, and everything has run smoothly to date.”

The Cardinals continued to play at Sportman’s Park, later renamed Busch Stadium, until May 1966 when they moved into a new stadium in downtown St. Louis.

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With two swings in one game, Biff Pocoroba created quite a bit of damage against the Cardinals.

A switch-hitting catcher who played 10 years in the major leagues, all with the Braves, Pocoroba died May 24, 2020, at 66.

Born in Burbank, Calif., “Biff” was Pocoroba’s given name, not a nickname.

Selected by the Braves in the 17th round of the 1971 amateur baseball draft, Pocoroba reached the majors in 1975. He became the Braves’ starting catcher in 1977 and hit .290 with 24 doubles and an on-base percentage of .394. The Braves rewarded him with a six-year, $1 million contract.

In 1978, Ted Simmons of the Cardinals was voted starting catcher for the National League all-star team and his backups were the Reds’ Johnny Bench and the Phillies’ Bob Boone. When an injury made Bench unavailable for the All-Star-Game in San Diego, Pocoroba was chosen to replace him and caught an inning. Boxscore

A month later, Pocoroba injured his right shoulder and was out for the rest of the season. During rotator cuff surgery in September 1978, Dr. Frank Jobe transferred muscle from Pocoroba’s lower bicep to his shoulder, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

When Pocoroba returned to the Braves in June 1979, Bruce Benedict had taken over as the starting catcher.

Danger zone

On May 14, 1982, Pocoroba was in the lineup against the Cardinals in Atlanta. The Cardinals were in first place in the East Division and the Braves led the West. The pitching matchup was Joaquin Andujar for the Cardinals and Phil Niekro for the Braves. During Niekro’s Hall of Fame career, Benedict and Pocoroba caught more of his games than any other catchers.

While batting in the second inning, Pocoroba’s foul tip broke the right index finger of Cardinals catcher Darrell Porter. After the inning, Porter was replaced by Orlando Sanchez. The injury sidelined Porter for three weeks.

Pocoroba helped Niekro hold the Cardinals scoreless for eight innings. He threw out two base runners, Keith Hernandez and Mike Ramsey, attempting to steal.

Trailing 1-0, the Cardinals rallied for a run in the top of ninth versus Braves closer Gene Garber. Lonnie Smith singled, swiped second, moved to third on Ozzie Smith’s bunt hit and scored on Hernandez’s sacrifice fly.

Biff bops

In the bottom half of the ninth, Cardinals reliever Doug Bair retired the first two batters before Pocoroba came to the plate.

“I was looking for a fastball because Bair had been getting ahead of batters with the pitch,” Pocoroba told the Atlanta Constitution.

Bair told the Post-Dispatch, “I tried to throw the ball low and away. He’s a first-ball, fastball hitter. I threw it right in his wheelhouse.”

Pocoroba hit Bair’s first pitch over the fence in right for a walkoff home run and a 2-1 Braves victory. Boxscore

It was Pocoroba’s first home run since August 1980 versus the Cardinals’ Bob Forsch. It also was the first home run Bair allowed in 22 innings in 1982.

The Cardinals and Braves went on to win division titles and met in the 1982 National League Championship Series. The Cardinals won the pennant, sweeping the Braves in three games. Pocoroba had one at-bat in the postseason. Porter was named most valuable player in both the NL Championship Series and in the World Series versus the Brewers.

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Richie Allen capped one of his best performances for the Cardinals by hitting a grand slam against the pitcher who got traded with him to St. Louis.

Fifty years ago, on June 2, 1970, Allen had seven RBI for the Cardinals in their 12-1 victory over the Giants at St. Louis.

Allen had a run-scoring single and a two-run home run versus Giants starter Gaylord Perry. The grand slam came against Jerry Johnson, who was traded with Allen and Cookie Rojas by the Phillies to the Cardinals in October 1969 for Curt Flood, Tim McCarver, Joe Hoerner and Byron Browne.

On May 19, 1970, the Cardinals dealt Johnson to the Giants for pitcher Frank Linzy. Johnson was making his fifth appearance for the Giants when he faced Allen for the first time.

New look

Looking to shake up the Cardinals, who lost six of their last seven, manager Red Schoendienst changed the batting order for the series opener versus the Giants at Busch Memorial Stadium.

Schoendienst had been featuring a top five of Jose Cardenal, Julian Javier, Lou Brock, Richie Allen and Joe Torre. Against Perry and the Giants, Schoendienst went back to the batting order he used to open the season, with Brock in the leadoff spot, followed by Cardenal, Allen and Torre. Joe Hague batted fifth, and Javier dropped to the seventh spot, behind Ted Simmons.

“The big reason for the change is getting Allen back up there to No. 3 where he can hurt people even more,” Schoendienst told the Associated Press.

To the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Schoendienst explained, “I like to bat Cardenal second, especially against right-handers, because he has good bat control and can hit that outside pitch to right. and I want to be sure Allen gets to bat in the first inning.”

Played on a damp Tuesday night, the game attracted a crowd of 11,111, a number the Post-Dispatch described as “a poker player’s dream.”

Seven future Hall of Famers were in the lineups: Willie Mays, Willie McCovey and Gaylord Perry for the Giants, and Lou Brock, Joe Torre, Ted Simmons and Steve Carlton for the Cardinals. On the bench were three more: Schoendienst and pitchers Juan Marichal of the Giants and Bob Gibson of the Cardinals.

Carlton pitched a four-hitter and would have had a shutout if not for McCovey’s home run, a 420-foot drive into the bleachers in right-center. “I told myself to throw him a really nasty slider, but I hung it,” Carlton told the Post-Dispatch.

Carlton also contributed three singles. “That was just a little cream topping,” Carlton said.

Power source

Though Allen wasn’t a future Hall of Famer, he played like one.

In the first inning, Allen’s single versus Perry scored Cardenal from second.

In the fifth, Allen, a right-handed batter, sliced a Perry slider over the wall in right for a two-run homer. The ball “landed in the runway behind the right-field fence,” according to the Post-Dispatch. Impressed by Allen’s ability to drive the ball the opposite way, Cardinals coach George Kissell told the Post-Dispatch, “He hits them to right like a left-handed golfer.”

Allen had astonishing power, even though his right hand was weakened three years earlier when pieces of glass from a broken headlight on a car he was pushing severed nerves in his palm.

“I worked hard to get that hand so that I could use it again,” Allen told Dick Young of the New York Daily News. “I got a job as a bricklayer’s helper. For nothing. A friend of mine gave me the job. He wanted to pay me. He kept throwing money at me and I kept throwing it back. I wanted to work for nothing. It made me keep thinking of why I was doing it. I asked him for a slow bricklayer, though.”

Run producer

Allen and Perry faced one another frequently. Allen would finish his career with 30 hits and 31 strikeouts versus the spitball specialist.

Jerry Johnson was a different story. He was Allen’s teammate with the Phillies in 1968 and 1969, and for a brief time with the 1970 Cardinals. Johnson began the 1970 season in the minors, got called up to the Cardinals on May 1 and was 2-0 with one save in seven relief appearances for them before he was traded.

In the seventh inning, Johnson relieved Perry and deprived Allen of another RBI, striking him out on a slider with a runner on third and none out.

An inning later, Allen came up against Johnson with the bases loaded and hit a fastball into the seats in left-center for his fifth grand slam in the big leagues. He’d hit three more grand slams before his career was done. Boxscore

The home run would be the only base hit Allen would get in 12 career at-bats versus Johnson.

Allen had one other game with seven RBI. It occurred Sept. 29, 1968, for the Phillies against the Mets at Shea Stadium in New York. Allen hit a two-run home run versus Tom Seaver, a solo shot off Cal Koonce and a grand slam against Ron Taylor, the former Cardinal.

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Cardinals third baseman Tommy Glaviano experienced a fielder’s worst nightmare.

Seventy years ago, on May 18, 1950, Glaviano made four errors, including three in a row in the ninth inning, in a game against the Dodgers at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn. The Cardinals, who led 8-0 entering the eighth inning, lost 9-8.

The Cardinals committed a total of six errors in the game, but the most costly were Glaviano’s gaffes in the ninth, when the Dodgers scored five times in what the New York Daily News described “as miraculous a finish as this famed Ebbets Field grotto had ever seen.”

Hot corner hustler

Glaviano was born and raised in Sacramento. The Cardinals signed him when he was 17. After two seasons in the Cardinals’ farm system, Glaviano served three years (1943-45) in the Coast Guard before returning to the minors.

After producing a .415 on-base percentage in 106 games for Columbus, Ohio, in 1948, Glaviano won the Cardinals’ third base job at spring training in 1949.

At 5 feet 9 and 175 pounds, Glaviano was “a short, stocky throwback to the glamorous Gashouse Gang era,” The Sporting News reported.

Bob Broeg of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch described Glaviano as “a sawed-off Pepper Martin.”

Glaviano, 25, made his major-league debut on April 19, 1949, in the Cardinals’ season opener versus the Reds at Cincinnati.

The Reds led, 1-0, in the sixth inning and had runners on second and third, with two outs, when Harry Brecheen got Virgil Stallcup to hit a slow grounder. Glaviano went far to his left, gloved the ball and whipped a side-armed throw to first. The ball sailed off target, struck Stallcup in the left cheek and bounced away, allowing both runners to score on the error. The Reds won, 3-1. Boxscore

Glaviano and another rookie, Eddie Kazak, split time at third base for the 1949 Cardinals. Glaviano hit .267 and played the last three weeks of the season with torn cartilage in his throwing arm, The Sporting News reported.

Good start to season

In 1950, Kazak was the Opening Day third baseman for the Cardinals, but Glaviano took over a week into the season. “The pitchers feel better with him at third,” Cardinals manager Eddie Dyer told The Sporting News.

Batting leadoff, Glaviano quit swinging for homers and got more selective at the plate. “He’s learning how to hit outside pitching to the opposite field,” Dyer said.

Glaviano hit .342 in his first 20 games for the 1950 Cardinals and made four errors. He “has covered more ground than any Cardinals third baseman in years,” Broeg noted in the Post-Dispatch.

Storm clouds

On a raw overcast Thursday afternoon with a temperature of 50 degrees, the Cardinals played the finale of a three-game series at Brooklyn after losing the first two to the Dodgers.

Glaviano’s home run leading off the fourth inning against starter Joe Hatten extended the Cardinals’ lead to 4-0.

With the Cardinals ahead, 8-0, in the sixth, errors by Glaviano and second baseman Red Schoendienst put Dodgers runners on first and third with none out. Starter Howie Pollet escaped unscathed, getting Jackie Robinson on a grounder to the mound, Carl Furillo on a pop foul and Gil Hodges on a strikeout.

“Here was a game that appeared so far gone that even the manager had given up on it, and you couldn’t blame him,” Dick Young wrote in the New York Daily News. The Dodgers “had looked more miserable than the weather. They hadn’t hit, their pitching had been punk, and even their defense, which has been Brooklyn’s matchless pride, had been butchered.”

Pollet limited the Dodgers to four hits through seven innings, but in the eighth it began to rain and his back stiffened. Furillo hit a three-run home run. After Duke Snider and Bruce Edwards each singled, putting runners on first and third with two outs, Gerry Staley relieved Pollet and yielded a run-scoring single to Pee Wee Reese, cutting the Cardinals’ lead to 8-4.

Throwing away a win

With rain falling steadily, Jim Russell led off the Dodgers’ ninth with a double against Staley and came home on Jackie Robinson’s double, making the score 8-5.

Al Brazle relieved and retired Furillo for the first out. Hodges hit a grounder to short, but Marty Marion “slipped on the muddy infield and couldn’t get his body behind a throw to first,” the Post-Dispatch reported.

Robinson stayed at second on the play and Hodges was safe with an infield single. Brazle walked Snider, loading the bases.

Roy Campanella hit a one-hopper to Glaviano, who hoped to start a game-ending double play. In his haste, Glaviano made a wide throw to second and Schoendienst had to leave the bag to catch it. Robinson scored from third on the error, cutting the Cardinals’ lead to 8-6, and the bases remained loaded.

Rookie Cloyd Boyer relieved Brazle and got Eddie Miksis to hit a high bouncer directly to Glaviano. Instead of throwing to second for a likely forceout and the start of a possible game-ending double play, Glaviano fired the ball toward home. The wild toss pulled catcher Del Rice off the plate and he “had to dive flat on his face for the save,” the New York Daily News reported.

Hodges scored from third on Glaviano’s second consecutive error, getting the Dodgers within a run at 8-7, and the bases still were full.

Reese came up next and hit a sharp grounder to Glaviano, who was positioned near the bag. “He had planned to scoop it up, step on third and fire to first” to complete a game-ending double play, the New York Daily News reported.

Instead, in moving toward the bag, Glaviano let the ball trickle through his legs and roll into short left field for an error. Snider and Campanella scored. giving the Dodgers a 9-8 victory. Boxscore

Stayin’ alive

Dick Young’s lead paragraph in the next morning’s New York Daily News was a gem: “Joe Garagiola didn’t get any sleep last night. He lay awake to make sure his roommate, Tommy Glaviano, wouldn’t take a walk out a window.”

The St. Louis Globe-Democrat described the collapse as “one of the goofiest shows” staged by the Cardinals. The Post-Dispatch called it “a cruel body blow.”

In the clubhouse, Glaviano sat with his head lowered, “trying to fight back tears that wanted to pour like the chilling rain which fell from the time the Dodgers’ bats first began to rattle,” the Post-Dispatch reported.

“The kid’s insides are eating him out,” said Cardinals reserve infielder Eddie Miller, “but he’ll be all right.”

Dyer said, “That was the most bitter defeat of any I’ve had in the years I’ve managed.”

In the Post-Dispatch, Broeg described Glaviano as a third baseman “with a thick chest, courage and agility” as well as “a scatter arm.”

“About his arm,” Dyer said, “it hasn’t been as accurate since he hurt his right shoulder two years ago at Columbus. I think it locks on him when he throws in a hurry, spoiling his aim.”

Dyer stuck with Glaviano at third base the rest of the 1950 season. He hit .285 with 29 doubles and scored 92 runs. His 25 errors at third base were one less than the 26 of the Giants’ Hank Thompson, who made the most misplays among 1950 National League third basemen.

Marty Marion became Cardinals manager in 1951 and decided at spring training to move Glaviano to center field. On April 10, a week before the regular season opened, Glaviano crashed into an outfield wall pursuing a drive in an exhibition game against the Browns and injured his right shoulder.

Glaviano wasn’t the same after the injury. He was a utility player for the Cardinals in 1951 and 1952. The Phillies claimed him on waivers and he spent 1953, his final season in the majors, with them.

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Johnny Lindell faced the Cardinals in a World Series as a Yankees outfielder and in a regular season as a pitcher for the Pirates and Phillies. He also played for the Cardinals for a couple of months when they sought power for their lineup.

Seventy years ago, on May 15, 1950, the Cardinals purchased the contract of Lindell from the Yankees for the $10,000 waiver price.

Lindell was an intriguing player because of the multiple roles he performed. He began his professional career as a pitcher, moved to outfielder and went back to pitching again.

A strapping 6 feet 4 and 225 pounds, Lindell batted and threw right-handed. Talented as well as versatile, he pitched for one pennant-winning Yankees team and played outfield for another. As a hitter, he twice led the American League in triples and as a pitcher he once led the National League in most walks issued.

Pitching prospect

Lindell developed his athletic skills in high school at Monrovia, Calif., near Pasadena. He was offered a chance to play football at the University of Southern California but signed with the Yankees when he was 19 in 1936. The Yankees sent him to their farm club in Joplin, Mo., and he posted a 17-8 record.

Working his way through the minor leagues, Lindell became a prominent pitching prospect. He was 18-7 with a 2.70 ERA for the Kansas City Blues in 1940.

Lindell began the 1941 season with the Yankees, made his major-league debut in a pinch-hitting appearance on April 18 and was sent to their farm club in Newark, N.J. Lindell was 23-4 with a 2.05 ERA for Newark in 1941 and the Yankees made plans to have him on their pitching staff in 1942.

Though he pitched in 23 games for the 1942 Yankees and was 2-1 with a 3.76 ERA, Lindell’s fastball and curve no longer were effective and manager Joe McCarthy lost confidence in him. Lindell didn’t pitch in the 1942 World Series versus the Cardinals.

According to The Sporting News, McCarthy told Lindell after the season, “Johnny, it does not look as if you ever will be a really good pitcher. However, you have the makings of a hitter.”

Lindell worked on his hitting in winter ball in California and reported to spring training in 1943 as an outfield candidate.

New role

The Yankees’ center fielder, Joe DiMaggio, and right fielder, Tommy Henrich, entered military service in 1943 and the club needed outfielders. Lindell was the Yankees’ 1943 Opening Day right fielder and remained in the lineup throughout the season. Lindell started 64 games in right, 52 in center and four in left for the American League champions. He led the league in triples (12) and was named to the all-star team.

In the 1943 World Series against the Cardinals, Lindell hit .111 but was involved in a critical play.

After the teams split the first two games, the Cardinals led, 2-1, in Game 3. Lindell led off the eighth inning with a single and advanced to second when center fielder Harry Walker bobbled the ball. George Stirnweiss bunted to first baseman Ray Sanders, whose throw to third arrived ahead of Lindell.

As third baseman Whitey Kurowski went to apply the tag, Lindell “came into the bag like a 10-ton truck,” crashing into Kurowski and knocking the ball loose, The Sporting News reported. The impact snapped Kurowski’s head back.

Lindell said the collision was unavoidable because Kurowski positioned himself in front of the base. “What was I to do? Beg his pardon?” Lindell asked.

Said Cardinals manager Billy Southworth: “Lindell played ball the way I like to see it played.”

The play woke up the Yankees, who scored five runs in the inning and won, 6-2.  Boxscore

Lindell had his best season in 1944. As the Yankees’ center fielder, he hit .300 with 33 doubles, 18 home runs and 103 RBI. He led the league in triples (16), extra-base hits (67) and total bases (297).

After spending part of 1945 in military service, Lindell returned to the Yankees in 1946 and was their Opening Day left fielder. In 1947, Lindell batted .500 in the World Series against the Dodgers, collecting nine hits in 18 at-bats and driving in seven runs in six games, despite cracking a rib in Game 5.

Right fit

Lindell’s playing time decreased when Casey Stengel became Yankees manager in 1949. After starting in left field on Opening Day in 1950, Lindell struggled, hitting .190 in 21 at-bats.

The 1950 Cardinals were stocked with left-handed hitters, led by Stan Musial and Enos Slaughter, and were looking for a power bat from the right side. Lindell, 33, was an available candidate.

“He’s a good competitor, a clutch player,” Cardinals manager Eddie Dyer told The Sporting News.

Though he had spent 15 years in the Yankees’ organization, Lindell welcomed the move to St. Louis. “I wanted to be traded because I didn’t fit Casey Stengel’s idea of a ballplayer,” Lindell told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “Not enough obvious spark, I guess.”

Lindell reported to the Cardinals 15 pounds over his regular weight of 225, the Post-Dispatch noted, but Dyer played him immediately in left field.

In his Cardinals debut, Lindell went 0-for-4 against the Dodgers’ Preacher Roe, but in his next game he hit a two-run home run into the upper deck in left at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn against rookie Billy Loes. Boxscore

A month later, on June 24, 1950, Lindell’s 10th-inning home run against Bob Chipman gave the Cardinals a 7-6 triumph over the Braves at Boston. Boxscore

Though 12 of Lindell’s 21 hits for the Cardinals were for extra bases, including five home runs, he batted .186 in 36 games and “his fielding had slipped along with his hitting,” the Post-Dispatch reported.

On July 17, 1950, the Cardinals sent Lindell to their farm team at Columbus, Ohio. After playing in five games there, the Cardinals accommodated his request to be sent to a Pacific Coast League club closer to his California home and traded him to the Hollywood Stars, a farm team of the Dodgers.

On the mound again

In 1951, Lindell went back to pitching and was 12-9 with a 3.03 ERA for Hollywood. Relying on a knuckleball, Lindell was dominant in 1952, posting a 24-9 record and 2.52 ERA for Hollywood, which had become a Pirates affiliate.

Lindell returned to the big leagues in 1953 as a member of the Pirates’ starting rotation. On May 3, 1953, he earned his first National League win, a four-hitter against the Cardinals at Pittsburgh. Boxscore

After posting a 5-16 record and 4.71 ERA for the Pirates, Lindell’s contract was sold to the Phillies on Aug. 31, 1953. He earned one win for the Phillies and it came against the Cardinals at St. Louis. Lindell struck out 11, walked eight and ignited the winning rally in the ninth with a run-scoring single. Boxscore

Lindell “would have had a far easier time if his catchers had been able to hold” the knuckleball, the Post-Dispatch reported.

The win was Lindell’s last as a pitcher. He was 1-1 with a 4.24 ERA for the Phillies. His combined record for the Pirates and Phillies in 1953 was 6-17 with a 4.66 ERA, and in six starts versus the Cardinals he was 2-4 with a 3.64 ERA. Lindell led National League pitchers in allowing the most walks (139) and wild pitches (11).

In 1954, Lindell didn’t pitch, made seven plate appearances, all as a pinch-hitter, for the Phillies and was released on May 10.

In 12 big-league seasons, Lindell hit .273 and had a pitching record of 8-18.

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(Updated June 6, 2020)

As a youth in his hometown of Winston-Salem, N.C., where the Cardinals had a farm club, Don Cardwell rooted for a promising prospect, Joe Cunningham. A few years later, Cunningham made the dramatic final out in the best game Cardwell pitched in the major leagues.

Sixty years ago, on May 15, 1960, Cardwell pitched a no-hitter for the Cubs against the Cardinals at Wrigley Field in Chicago. It was Cardwell’s first appearance for the Cubs since being acquired from the Phillies, and it was the first no-hitter pitched against the Cardinals in 41 years. Before Cardwell, Hod Eller of the Reds was the last to do it on May 11, 1919.

Needing one more out to complete the no-hitter, Cardwell faced his boyhood favorite, Cunningham, who laced a sinking line drive. The ball seemed destined to drop for a single until left fielder Walt Moryn came in and made a catch near his shoetops.

Cardinals connections

While in high school, Cardwell got a job at the Winston-Salem ballpark. “I used to hang up the score for each inning on the board and get $2.50 a night for doing it,” Cardwell told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “I went to the park often to watch Harvey Haddix, Vinegar Bend Mizell, Joe Cunningham and Don Blasingame.”

In his senior season of prep baseball, Cardwell pitched a pair of no-hitters. The first was a perfect game and the second occurred in the state title game.

Cardwell was 18 when the Phillies signed him in 1954. He made his big-league debut with them three years later. A 6-foot-4 right-hander, Cardwell threw hard from a sidearm delivery but had losing records with the Phillies.

“Catching his ball was like catching a brick. It was that heavy,” Phillies first baseman Ed Bouchee said in the book “We Played the Game.”

On May 13, 1960, the Phillies traded Cardwell and Bouchee to the Cubs for second baseman Tony Taylor and catcher Cal Neeman. Cardwell wasn’t surprised to be traded, but expected it would be to the Cardinals, whose manager, Solly Hemus, had been his Phillies teammate.

“I thought I’d be with your ball club by now,” Cardwell told the Post-Dispatch.

Hello, Chicago

Two days after the trade, Cardwell was the starting pitcher for the Cubs in Game 2 of a Sunday doubleheader against the Cardinals at Chicago.

In Game 1, Larry Jackson pitched a four-hitter in a 6-1 victory, ending the Cardinals’ eight-game losing streak. It was their first road win of the season in 13 attempts. Boxscore

Entering Game 2, Cardwell was an unlikely candidate to pitch a no-hitter versus the Cardinals. He had an 0-3 record against them since reaching the majors.

The Cardinals’ batting order was Cunningham, right field; Alex Grammas, shortstop; Bill White, first base; Ken Boyer, third base; Daryl Spencer, second base; Leon Wagner, left field; Curt Flood, center field; Hal Smith, catcher; Lindy McDaniel pitcher.

With one out in the first inning, Cardwell issued a walk to Grammas before retiring the next 26 batters in a row.

“His fastball was his best pitch,” Cubs catcher Del Rice told The Sporting News. “We used some breaking stuff early in the game, but from the fifth inning on I called fastballs almost entirely.”

Cardwell credited Rice and an unusual pitching delivery with making a difference in his performance.

Rice, 37, debuted with the Cardinals in 1945 and played for them the first 11 years of his major-league career. “I never had to shake Del off once,” Cardwell said. “He called the pitches perfectly.”

As for his pitching motion, Cardwell explained he developed a way to go into his windup with the ball in his glove instead of his hand because he suspected batters were detecting his pitches. “I was determined to hide my pitches better,” he said.

Cardwell “doesn’t have the ball in his right hand when he starts his windup,” The Sporting News observed. “The ball is in his glove. Cardwell pumps once with both arms going above his head, but with his right hand empty. Then he repeats the pumping action and at the top of the windup he takes the ball out of the glove and comes through with the pitch.”

Tough outs

The biggest threats to Cardwell’s no-hitter came in the last two innings.

In the eighth, Spencer led off “with a sizzling smash” to second baseman Jerry Kindall, who ranged to his right, “got in front of it, gloved it on a wicked first hop” and threw to first in time, The Sporting News reported.

After Wagner grounded out, Stan Musial batted for Flood. Cardwell threw sinking fastballs and Musial struck out. “I was swinging at the sound,” Musial told the Post-Dispatch.

Said Rice: “He was really humming at the finish.”

In the ninth, Cardwell’s former Phillies teammate, Carl Sawatski, batting for Hal Smith, led off and sent a drive to right. Bob Will, who stood 5 feet 10, usually played right field for the 1960 Cubs, but after Will went hitless in Game 1, manager Lou Boudreau put George Altman, who stood 6 feet 4, in right for Game 2. “Altman went back and grabbed the ball with a one-handed, leaping catch in front of the wall,” The Sporting News noted.

“When George Altman reached high to get Carl Sawatski’s drive, I went up three feet with him,” Cardwell told the Post-Dispatch.

Several Cubs told the St. Louis Globe-Democrat that Bob Will never would have reached Sawatski’s drive.

After George Crowe, batting for McDaniel, flied out to center, Cunningham came to the plate. The drama intensified with each pitch as Cunningham worked the count to 3-and-2.

Cunningham hit a low liner to left. Walt Moryn, nicknamed “Moose,” loped forward and reached down at the last moment to catch the ball before it landed.

“For this once,” wrote The Sporting News, “the Moose turned gazelle.”

Moryn told the Chicago Tribune, “If I’d have missed that last catch, I’d have been begging for an error.”

Said Cardwell: “When Walt Moryn came in and grabbed that low liner by Cunningham, I sank to the ground with him.” Video

“Thousands of fans poured onto the field and surrounded their new hero,” the Associated Press reported. “A score of ushers and police officers needed something like a half hour to get Cardwell safely into the Cubs dressing room.”

The Cubs won, 4-0, in a game played in 1:46. Boxscore

Changing places

On June 15, 1960, exactly one month after his big catch, Moryn was traded by the Cubs to the Cardinals.

Cardwell was 8-14 for the 1960 Cubs. He was 15-14 in 1961 and 7-16 in 1962.

On Oct. 17, 1962, the Cubs traded Cardwell, Altman and catcher Moe Thacker to the Cardinals for pitchers Jackson and McDaniel, plus catcher Jimmie Schaffer.

Cardwell never pitched for the Cardinals. A month after they acquired him, the Cardinals dealt Cardwell and shortstop Julio Gotay to the Pirates for shortstop Dick Groat and pitcher Diomedes Olivo. Groat played a key role in helping the Cardinals become World Series champions in 1964.

Cardwell twice was a 13-game winner for the Pirates. In 1969, he pitched for the World Series champion Mets.

In 40 appearances, including 32 starts, versus the Cardinals in his career, Cardwell was 5-19 with a 4.55 ERA.

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