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Redbirds & Red Sox Just Re-load

Posted By Steven Keys On Oct 20 2013 @ 5:33 pm In St. Louis Cardinals | No Comments

Even as baseball enters its last, thrilling phase (WS), Yankees fans must still be brooding over their team’s trivial pursuit of a post-season spot. Though in truth, even absent the A-Rod saga, the 2013 team was more than a few tweaks away from serious contendership.

But if you’re a Highlander de-vo-tee, I have a little sump’um that might just perk-up your spirits and rekindle some of that pinstripers’ pride.

Believe it or not, the Bronx Bombers live-on this post-season…vicariously, through the St. Louis Cardinals. Now wait a minute, don’t bail on me yet, I’ve got a good case here.

Consider the Redbirds Yankees West, though St. Louisians would be within rights calling New Yorkers Cardinals East, considering their Midwestern ball-club was winning titles (a/k/a Browns) as far back as the 1880s, long before Highlanders hit the scene (1901)).

Here’s a smattering of the Yanks – Cards Connection:

Iconic Mgr. Miller Huggins played for & guided Cards before landing in New York;

Yogi Berra cut his baseball teeth in the Gateway City (‘25);

Mickey Mantle, a Sooner by birth, was reared in Cardinal country and would’ve batted alongside Stan Musial if St. Louis hadn’t gone ‘cheep’ ($1000 bonus offer);

Mgr. John Keane beat Bombers in ’64 (WS), then joined ’em in ’65; and 

Joe Torre had his best season as a Card (‘71), then managed NYY back to greatness.

Others took Horace Greeley’s advice going West and turning in pinstripes for a sea of red.

Leo “The Lip” Durocher roomed with Ruth and wound up in “Gashouse Gang” (30s);

Roger Maris left adoring NYC press for World Series fun with Midwestern flair (’67-68); and

Lance Berkman, one of the heroes of Cards last triumph (WS ’11) had stop-over in NYC, hit well in the PS (’10), got handed his hat and headed West to Missouri (’11-12).

Like the Yankees, the Red Wings, Blackhawks, Cowboys, Lakers, Celtics, Packers, Spurs and Patriots, St. Louis is a standard-bearer organization. Dynasties are rare today but these franchises always seem to be in the hunt for more.

And just as important as playing like a champion, is acting like one, then passing it on down the line: ‘Phone for Misters Puig or Wilson, a Mister Koufax calling.’

Cardinals are on the cusp of extending their NL record title-tally to twelve (got a ways to go to catch Yanks titanesque 27), but don’t count that ring before fat lady sings. St. Louis faces a familiar (’04, 67, 46) and formidable foe in Boston. These Red Sox got more than mutton-chops & beard’s nests, they got moxie.

And if you have any doubt for which side Yankee Empire will be pulling, remember this political axiom: ‘the enemy of my enemy (BOS) is my friend (STL).’

Say hello to your friends in the Gateway, New York.

Steven Keys

Can o’ Corn

Photo Credit: Chris Von Der Ahe / STL Browns (Cards) / wc.cca / LOC



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