Monday, January 18, 2010

Ken Boyer (#259)

Ken Boyer was the long-time star third baseman for the St. Louis Cardinals.

He began his minor-league career in 1949 with the Cardinals' organization. After 3 seasons in the minors, he missed the 1952-53 seasons while in military service, but returned to the minors in 1954.

His major-league debut came in April 1955, and he spent the next 11 seasons as the Cardinals' everyday third baseman, never playing less than 142 games in a season. (The exception would be in 1957, when oddly enough, Boyer was the team's regular centerfielder.) Along the way, he made 7 all-star teams, won 5 gold glove awards, and was the National League MVP in 1964. The Cardinals won the 1964 World Series, defeating the Yankees, who employed Ken's brother Clete as their third baseman.

After the 1965 season, Boyer was traded to the Mets for pitcher Al Jackson and third baseman Charlie Smith. He continued as the Mets' regular third baseman in 1966.

In July 1967, Ken was traded to the White Sox (along with Sandy Alomar) for backup catcher J. C. Martin. [This trade seems like an insult to Boyer.]

The following May, he was released by the White Sox, but signed with the Dodgers a few days later. Boyer would continue with the Dodgers until the end of the 1969 season.

After his playing career Boyer stayed in the game as a manager. After managing in the minors from 1970-1978, he was the Cardinals' manager from 1978 to 1980.

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