St. Louis Cardinals
The St. Louis Cardinals of St. Louis, Missouri play baseball in the National League (NL) of Major League Baseball (MLB). The new Busch Stadium has been their home stadium since 2006. One of the most successful franchises in baseball history, the Cardinals have won 11 World Series championships (second only to the New York Yankees' 27 and most among National League franchises), 19 National League pennants and 13 division titles.
Cardinals achievements that have had an impact both on major league baseball and sports in general include Branch Rickey's pioneering of the farm system, Rogers Hornsby's two batting Triple Crowns, Dizzy Dean's 30-win season in 1934, Stan Musial's 17 MLB and 29 NL records, Bob Gibson's 1.12 earned run average (ERA) in 1968, Whitey Herzog's Whiteyball, Mark McGwire breaking the single-season home run record in 1998, and the 2011 championship team's unprecedented comebacks. The Cardinals have won 105 or more games in four different seasons and won 100 or more a total of nine times. Cardinals’ players have won 20 league MVPs, four batting Triple Crowns, and three Cy Young Awards.
The Cardinals are an extremely popular team; they routinely see attendances among the league's highest, and are consistently among the Top 3 in MLB in local television ratings.
Of their many World Series’ successes, two have come in the 21st century – 2006 and 2011. In 2006 the Cardinals were matched up against the American League champions Detroit Tigers, winning the Series in five games, taking Games one, three, four, and five. One notable fact about this series was that it was one of the few Series’ where teams had remained in the same city since as long ago as 1901.
In 2011 the Cardinals played a best-of-seven playoff against the American League champions Texas Rangers with the Cardinals defeating the Rangers in seven games to win their 11th World Series championship and their first since 2006. The Series was noted for its back-and-forth Game 6, in which the Cardinals erased a two-run deficit in the bottom of the ninth inning, then did it again in the 10th. In both innings, the Rangers were one strike away from their first World Series championship.
Among the all-time greats for the Cardinals, we can especially mention Stan Musial who played his entire career in Cardinal red, winning three World Series rings, three MVP awards and 24 all-star nominations.
Bob Gibson was unquestionably the best pitcher in the history of the St. Louis Cardinals. He’s one of the main reasons the Cardinals won World Series titles in 1964 and 1967, winning the MVP award for each of those series.
Ozzie Smith was one of the most popular Cardinals of all time. He helped the Cardinals win the 1982 World Series. He also made 14 all-star teams as a Redbird and is third on the St. Louis all-time stolen base list with 433 swipes. He played some of the best defense of his era as well, winning 11 Gold Gloves as a Cardinal and 13 overall.
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