Cards All-Time Top 40 – Enos Slaughter #8

Cards All-Time Top 40 – Enos Slaughter #8

The Top 40 countdown of the greatest St. Louis Cardinals of all time continues with their Hall of Fame outfielder, Enos Slaughter.

Enos Bradsher Slaughter

The Basics

Position

Bat

Thw

Total Yrs

Yrs in StL

HR

RBI

SB

Avg

Outfield

Left 

Right

1938-'42, '46-'59

1938-'42, '46-'53

146

1148

64

.305

The Awards

Hall of Fame

Retired #

World Champ

All-Star

MVP

Cy Young

Gold Glove

1985

1996

2

10

 

NA

NA

Note: All stats and awards listed are for years as a Cardinal only.
Slaughter's career stats available from baseball-reference.com.

Voter Comments

Rob Rains (11): When Slaughter's 13-year Cardinal career ended in 1954 when he was traded to the Yankees, he cried. So did a lot of St. Louis fans in the most negative reaction to a trade since Rogers Hornsby was dealt for Frankie Frisch in 1926. Owner Gussie Busch had to take his phone off the hook because he was getting so many angry calls.

Bob Burnes wrote in the Globe-Democrat that the deal could be defended and explained in a pure baseball sense, but added Slaughter "was an institution, not only among the fans, but among the players as well. He played the game the way it should be played."

An eight-time All-Star, Slaughter ranks second in franchise history in RBIs, fourth in hits, total bases, games and runs scored.

Jerry Modene (7): Enos carries an undeserved reputation as a Dixie Walker-style baseball racist, thanks to the embellishment-long-after-the-fact of his collision with Jackie Robinson. (Some historians, who ought to know better, have even tried to smear Joe Garagiola with the same brush because of his collision with Robinson in 1950, a collision that all but ended Garagiola's career. Even though he played another five years after that, he was never the same.)

Better Enos be remembered as the original Charlie Hustle, a solid ballplayer who never stopped running. I wonder how many people realize that old Country rates second on the all-time Cardinal list for RBI with his 1148. Or that he once drove in 130 runs (1946, when he also hit 18 home runs, also his career high).

Ray Mileur (6): If the term "old school" ever applied to anyone, it would have to be Enos "Country" Slaughter. One of the game's greatest hustlers, Arthur Daley of the New York Times once wrote "On the ball field he is perpetual motion itself. He would run through a brick wall, if necessary, to make a catch, or slide into a pit of ground glass to score a run."

A 10-time All-Star, Slaughter played for the Cardinals from 1938-42, 1946-53, missing three seasons due to military service during World War II. After the war he returned to St. Louis in 1946 and led the National League with 130 RBIs and the Cardinals to a World Series win over the Boston Red Sox - an amazing feat, especially after being out of the game for three years.

In the seventh game of that series, Slaughter made the famous "Mad Dash" home from first base, making him an instant baseball legend. This play was named #10 on the Sporting News list of Baseball's 25 Greatest Moments in 2001. His "Mad Dash" to score the winning run is commemorated with a bronze statute outside Busch Stadium of Slaughter sliding home.

Brian Walton (7): With extra-base power to all fields and a level swing conducive to contact hitting, Slaughter led the National League with 52 doubles in 1939 and 188 hits in 1942. Slaughter used his speed well, too, with league-bests in triples in both 1942 and 1949.

Slaughter was definitely a clutch hitter, taking the league RBI title with 130 in 1946 and spoiling three different enemy no-hit bids late in the game. In 1947, he drove in ten runs in a single day during a doubleheader. Though Slaughter missed the 1943 and 1944 seasons, he was the leader of the 1942 World Championship club and compiled his best season to set up the 1946 World Champions, too. In those two Series, he posted an impressive line of .295/.404/.523 (BA/OBP/SLG).

Slaughter's many contributions have been duly noted, but did you know that even when injured, he made a huge impact on Cardinals history? In August, 1941, Slaughter was leading the Cardinals in home runs and RBIs when he and teammate Terry Moore collided while chasing down a ball in the outfield. With Slaughter out for the season with a broken collarbone, playing time was opened up for a youngster the Cardinals would call up from Rochester named Stanley Frank Musial.

Voter Comments Key: Voter (Individual Ranking); NR = Not Rated

Master List: To see our entire list of the greatest 40 Cardinals players of all-time as they are unveiled daily, click here.

© 2007 stlcardinals.scout.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, rewritten or redistributed.

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