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Red Schoendienst, Cardinals legend and Baseball Hall of Famer, dead at 95

Mark Townsend
Yahoo Sports Contributor
Fred “Red” Schoendienst, a St. Louis Cardinals legend who was elected into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1989, has died at age 95. (AP)

St. Louis Cardinals legend and Baseball Hall of Famer Red Schoendienst died Wednesday, the team has announced. He was 95.

Schoendienst played in the majors for 19 seasons, and had two notable stints with St. Louis as an outfielder and eventually the team’s starting second baseman. He played for the Cardinals from 1945-56, helping the team to a World Series championship in 1946, and again from 1961-63. After retiring, he immediately went into coaching, joining St. Louis’ staff for their 1964 championship season.

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In 1965, Schoendienst was named the Cardinals manager. He held that position through the 1976 season. Schoendienst was at the helm for National League pennants in 1967-68 and a World Series championship in 1967.

Hall of Famer

Schoendienst was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame by the Veterans Commission in 1989.

His election was based strongly on his production as a player. Over 19 seasons, Schoendienst racked up 2,449 hits and scored 1,223 runs. He appeared in 2,216 games and was a .289/.337/.387 hitter.

He was selected to the NL All-Star team 10 times.

Schoendienst’s best seasons mainly came in a Cardinals uniform. He delivered 1,980 of his career hits and had nine of his All-Star seasons with St. Louis. He was traded to the New York Giants in 1956 and then to the Milwaukee Braves in 1957.

As Cardinals manager, Schoendienst won 1,041 games. He was brought back as in interim manager during the 1980 and 1990 seasons.

Cardinals ambassador

Schoendienst remained a vital member of the Cardinals organization even after his playing and managing days were over. He’s served the team in the front office as an assistant to the general manager, and as an ambassador representing the franchise in the community and at baseball events all over the world.

As Rick Hummel of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch wrote Wednesday, Stan Musial should be recognized as “the greatest Cardinal” to ever play the game. However, the title of “Mr. Cardinal” should be reserved for Red Schoendienst for his countless contributions that impacted every level of the organization.

Red Schoendienst wasn’t just a baseball lifer, he was a St. Louis Cardinals lifer.

A big piece of the organization will forever be missing following his death.

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