Stan Musial Was “The Man” on and Off the Field
On Saturday evening in St. Louis at the age of 92 Stan Musial, one of the greatest Baseball players of all-time passed away. He was drafted by the Cardinals in 1938 as a pitcher, but broke in with the Cardinals as an Outfielder in 1941. He played his entire career in St. Louis and became known as “The Man” for his work on the field, but in St. Louis he was known as “The Man’ off the field as well.
From 1941 to 1963 Stan Musial put up some of the most impressive numbers any player could hope to and he did it with raw talent. The only time he took off was in 1945 to serve his country in WWII in the Navy.
- 24× All-Star (1943, 1944, 1946, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1950, 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1959², 1960, 1960², 1961, 1961², 1962, 1962², 1963)
- 3× World Series champion (1942, 1944, 1946)
- 3× NL MVP (1943, 1946, 1948)
- 7× NL batting champion (1943, 1946, 1948, 1950, 1951, 1952, 1957)
- 1957 Lou Gehrig Memorial Award
- St. Louis Cardinals #6 retired
- Major League Baseball All-Century Team
In 1969 Musial was elected in to the Baseball Hall of Fame on his first ballot with 93.2% of the vote. The St. Louis Cardinals retired his #6 and put a statue of “The Man” outside of Busch Stadium. For any player from any era those numbers would good enough to ride off in the sunset and call it a day, but not Stan.
After Stan Musial retired he didn’t go to some warn climate and sit in mothballs’ to come out on some rare occasion, he stayed in St. Louis and became a part of the fabric of the city. Musial hosted golf tournaments, worked with the boys and girls club of St. Louis and helped raise money for baseball fields and equipment all over the city. There are 100,000 stories in St. Louis about Stan Musial and NOT one of them bad.
Musial was also the face of the Cardinals and he was always around the team. Anytime there was a Cardinal event, parade, retirement or just a big game at Busch Stadium Stan Musial was there. I don’t mean he sat in the team box and waved to the crowd. Stan Musial was a real person who always took time to walk around the stadium, shake hands and sign anything. He wasn’t like one of these legends you saw from time to time. He was a guy you could see in the city anytime and maybe have a beer with.
Stan Musial was a great baseball player but he was an even better man and role model.