On this date in 1960, Cardinals superstar Stan Musial informed his club of his dissatisfaction with the amount of his paycheck.
Paid $100,000 in 1959, Musial told the Redbirds that he had a bad season and he didn't justify his salary. So he asked for -- and received -- a pay cut to $80,000.
(Are you reading this Albert? If Pujols gets the $30 million a year for which he is reportedly asking, that's $185,185 PER GAME!)
Nine years later on this date, in 1969, Musial is inducted into the Hall of Fame in his first season of eligibility. Despite playing in the relative anonymity of the Midwest, Stan the Man was named on 92.3 percent of the ballots. And that might not seem like a surprise unless you consider how much more difficult it used to be to get into the Hall of Fame.
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On this date in 1953 former Cardinals pitcher Dizzy Dean got 10 more votes than the minimum to be elected to the Hall of Fame on his seventh try. Sure, Dean had a career shortened by injury. But he had a stunning .644 winning percentage while racking up 150 victories in parts of 12 major league seasons. He was the most recent NL pitcher to win 30 games (in 1934) and he won the NL Most Valuable Player Award that season. He was runner up for the award in 1935 and 1936 and he was an All-Star in four of his six healthy full seasons.
Also noteworthy on the 1953 ballot: Former Yankees outfielder Joe DiMaggio was rejected by baseball writers in his first year of eligibility for the Hall of Fame. (Back then there was no five-year waiting period.) DiMaggio, who was named in 1969 as Baseball's Greatest Living Player and who held the distinction of being the only player to make the All-Star Game in every season in which he played, didn't win enshrinement until 1955.
In 1971 native St. Louisan Yogi Berra, also a pretty good ballplayer by just about any standard that can be imagined, was rejected by writers in his first bid for the Hall of Fame. Berra, who was passed over by the Cardinals in favor of his neighbor, Joe Garagiola, played in 14 World Series and won 10 of them -- both records. In addition to re-writing the World Series record book, Berra played in 15 All-Star Games and won the AL MVP Award three times.