ST. LOUIS — The St. Louis Cardinals announced Wednesday that Jim Edmonds, Willie McGee, Marty Marion and Mike Shannon on Aug. 16 will be inducted into their new Hall of Fame.
This is the first induction class since the team dedicated the Cardinals Hall of Fame with an inaugural class on Opening Day in St. Louis earlier this month.
"We are proud to enshrine this elite group of Cardinals whose outstanding achievements have earned them the honor of permanently joining the greatest names in Cardinals history in our Hall of Fame," said Bill DeWitt Jr., the Cardinals' chairman and chief executive officer. "We congratulate each of them on this tremendous honor and look forward to celebrating their achievements in August during induction weekend."
The Cardinals Hall of Fame was established as a way to recognize the careers and significant achievements of the greatest players in franchise history, as well as those who have made contributions to the organization.
To be eligible, players must have played for the Cardinals for at least three seasons and must be retired as a major-league player for at least three years.
The eligible pool of players is divided into two categories: "modern players" and "veteran players." If a player retired more than 40 years prior to the induction year, he is classified as a veteran player.
Each member of the Cardinals Hall of Fame is permanently enshrined in the new Hall of Fame Gallery presented by Edward Jones, located on the second floor of Cardinals Nation in Ballpark Village, just outside the entrance to the team's new museum.
The Hall of Fame Gallery is free and open to the public. The plaques that adorn the gallery are being produced by Matthews International, the company that also provides plaques for the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York.
On Opening Day, the Cardinals dedicated the Hall of Fame with an inaugural class, consisting of 22 Cardinals who are either enshrined in the National Baseball Hall of Fame as Cardinals or whose number has been retired by the club.
The 2014 Induction Class is the first class to be inducted into the new Hall of Fame that was selected via a formal process which includes fans, baseball experts and the team.
"We want to thank our fans and the Red Ribbon Panel for choosing an outstanding first induction class," said Cardinals President Bill DeWitt III. "It wasn't easy to make a selection from a list of the truly greatest players in team history."
Chosen by the fans, McGee and Edmonds were the top two vote-getters in the first-ever online Cardinals Hall of Fame ballot presented by Edward Jones. The ballot, which also included Cardinals legends Bob Forsch, Keith Hernandez, Mark McGwire, Matt Morris, Ted Simmons and Joe Torre, was selected by a Red Ribbon Panel of Cardinals baseball experts through a secret ballot process. Nearly 80,000 votes were cast by Cardinals fans over the seven-week voting period.
In addition to nominating modern players for fan balloting, the Red Ribbon Panel also elected legendary shortstop Marty Marion, a veteran player, for induction using a secret ballot process.
Marion, the 1944 National League Most Valuable Player and seven-time All-Star, played 11 seasons with the Cardinals including three World Championship seasons in 1942, '44 and '46.
Independent of the Red Ribbon Panel selection process, the Cardinals organization retained the right to annually induct an individual who has been an important figure in Cardinals history and whose contributions to the franchise warrant induction.
The selection this year is broadcaster Shannon, a lifelong St. Louisan who has been part of the Cardinals family for more than half a century. Mike had a notable playing career with the team followed by more than 40 years in the radio booth as one of most popular broadcasters in team history.