On this day 44 years ago, members of the 1941 Cardinals gathered at Busch Stadium II to honor some kid who played only 12 games with the team that season 27 years earlier.
Of course, that kid would later be known as "The Man."
Outside of the northeast corner of the then new ballpark where Musial never played a game the Cardinals dedicated a giant statue of Stan Musial holding a bat in anticipation of a pitch. Nevermind that the the batting stance was all wrong and that neither the body nor the face of the statue bear the slightest resemblance to Stan.
On it's base the monument is inscribed with the words of former National League president and MLB commissioner Ford Frick: "Here stands baseball's perfect warrior. Here stands baseball's perfect night."
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That's a heckuva compliment because Frick was associated with some pretty darn good baseball players. In the 1930s Frick helped establish the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY. He covered the Yankees as a journalist earlier in his career and was vary close with Babe Ruth, serving as his ghost writer during that time. Still he thought of Musial as baseball perfection.
That's some compliment.
Musial hit .426 in 1941 during a late season call up to the big leagues en route to a .331 career batting average and he launched the first of his 475 major league homers. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1969.