WASHINGTON (KMOX) – Simply stated, Stan Musial is “The Man.” Not only is he arguably the greatest player in Cardinals’ history, he won over the nation as well.
The Hall of Fame baseball player will be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom at a ceremony at the White House Tuesday.
“Stan Musial embodies all that is good about the game of baseball and what it means to be a St. Louis Cardinal,” Cardinals Chairman Bill DeWitt Jr. said. “He is also an extraordinary American deserving of the nation’s highest civilian honor.”
That same feeling was reiterated across Cardinal Nation. Within hours of the St. Louis Cardinals launching the social media campaign to honor Musial last May, thousands visited the campaign website, signed the petition and posted fun photographs with Flat Stan the Man.
The year-long Stand for Stan campaign drew support from fans, celebrities, and even the President himself. (Click the photo below to see more Stan the Man fans.)
Stan Musial joined the St. Louis Cardinals late in the 1941 season, and quickly became the man to watch as he immediately began a stretch of 16 straight years in which he batted .300 or better.
In 1943, Musial led the National League with a .357 average, 220 hits, 48 doubles and 20 triples and earned the first of his three Most Valuable Player awards.
Musial ended his 22 year career in 1963 and became the first player in Cardinals’ history to have his uniform number retired. In 1969 with 93 percent of the ballots Musial was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
After hanging up his uniform Musial remained a Redbird through and through. Musial was a long-time senior vice-president with the organization and served as general manager in 1967, when the Cardinals won the World Series over the Boston Red Sox.
A bronze statue of Musial now stands outside Busch Stadium on the newly dedicated Musial Plaza with the following words: “Here stands baseball’s perfect warrior. Here stands baseball’s perfect knight.”
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