- Lou Brock
Infobox MLB retired
birthdate=birth date and age|1939|6|18
St. Louis Cardinals
St. Louis Cardinals(by|1964-by|1979)
* 6x All-Star selection (1967, 1971, 1972, 1974, 1975, 1979)
World Serieschampion (1964, 1967)
Babe Ruth Award
Roberto Clemente Award
Lou Gehrig Memorial Award
NL Comeback Player of the Year
* St. Louis Cardinals #20 retired
Louis Clark "Lou" Brock (born
June 18, 1939, El Dorado, Arkansas) is an American former player in Major League Baseball. Brock was a left fielderwho played his career with the Chicago Cubsand St. Louis Cardinals. He batted and threw left-handed. He is currently a special instructor coach for the St. Louis Cardinals.
Brock was born in
El Dorado, Arkansasand played college baseball at Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He signed with the Cubs as an amateur free agent and broke into the Majors in by|1961.
Brock for Broglio
Brock was blessed with great speed and baserunning instincts, but the young right fielder failed to impress the Cubs management. In by|1964 after losing patience with his development, the Cubs gave up on Brock and made him part of a trade with the
St. Louis Cardinals. The June 15deadline deal for pitcher Ernie Brogliosaw Brock, Jack Springand Paul Toth head to St. Louis for Broglio, Bobby Shantz, and Doug Clemens. Cardinals general manager Bing Devine, specifically sought Brock at the insistence of Cardinals' manager Johnny Keaneto increase team speed and solidify the Cardinals' lineup, struggling after the retirement of left fielder Stan Musialin 1963. At the time, many thought the deal was a heist for the Cubs. Broglio had led the National League in wins four years earlier, and had won 18 games at the time of the trade.
After Brock was traded to the Cardinals, his career turned around significantly. He moved to left field and batted .348 and stole 38 bases for the Cardinals in the remainder of the 1964 season. At the time of the trade, the Cardinals were 28-31, in eighth place in the National League, trailing even the Cubs, who were 27-27 and in sixth place. Four months to the day later, the Cardinals would win the
1964 World Seriesin seven games over the favored New York Yankees, who were appearing in their fourteenth World Series in sixteen years (and their last until a dozen years later), helped in part by Brock's rejuvenated bat. Meanwhile, Broglio won only seven games for the Chicago Cubs before retiring from baseball after the 1966 season. To this day, the trade of Brock for Brogliois considered one of the most lopsided deals in baseball history. It is considered by many Cubs fans to be the worst in franchise history (dating back to by|1871).
During his career, Brock helped the Cardinals to National League pennants in 1964, 1967, and 1968 and to
World Serieschampionships in 1964 and 1967, defeating the New York Yankeesand the Boston Red Sox, respectively, both times in seven games. The Cardinals suffered one World Seriesloss during Brock's tenure. That was in 1968 against the Detroit Tigers- the Tigers rallied from down three games to one behind the excellent pitching of Mickey Lolich.
Facts and Stats
In by|1967, Brock became the first player to steal 50 bases and hit 20 home runs in the same season.
His supreme talent for basestealing perhaps overshadowed his fine hitting, as he collected 3,023 hits in his career. He was also not particularly known as a power hitter, but he did display significant "pop" from time to time. In David Halberstam's book, "October 1964", the author states that manager Johnny Keane asked Brock to forgo the power game in favor of the speed game. However, Brock got some licks in, here and there.
In his rookie season (by|1962), Brock became one of three players to hit a home run into the center-field bleachers at the old
Polo Groundsin New York since its 1923 reconstruction. His blast came against Al Jackson in the second game of a June 17 doubleheaderagainst the New York Metsand would be followed by Hank Aaron's shot the very next day. Joe Adcockwas the first to hit a ball over that wall, in by|1953. Babe Ruthhad reached the old bleachers (a comparable distance) before the reconstruction.
In 1967, Brock hit 5 home runs in the first 4 games of the season, becoming the first player to do so.
Brock remained best known for base-stealing and starting Cardinals rallies. He was said to have disdained
Maury Wills' method of base-stealing, instead shortening his leads and going hard into second base, thus inflicting punishment on opposing players rather than himself by having to dive back into first base frequently. He was also an early student of game films. He used an 8mm movie camera from the dugout to film opposing pitchers and study their windups and pickoffmoves to detect weaknesses he could exploit.
In a unique (if incidental) accomplishment, Brock was the first player ever to bat in a major league regular season game in
Canada. He led off the April 14, by|1969 game against the Montreal Exposat Jarry Park by lining out to second baseman Gary Sutherland. The Expos' pitcher, Larry Jaster, was a teammate of Brock's just the year before, and had been selected in the expansion draftby the Expos after the by|1968 season.
His best batting average was in 1964, when he batted .315, one of eight years he batted over .300, he was a 6-time National League
All-Star, he led the league in runs two times (1967 and by|1971), led the league in doubles (46 in 1968), and led the league in triples (14 in 1968).
Brock held the record for career
stolen bases (938) until it was broken by Rickey Henderson. In by|1974 he stole a major-league record 118 bases (breaking Maury Wills' record of 104 in by|1962; Brock's single-season record was also later broken by Henderson). Brock led the National League in stolen bases eight times between by|1966 and 1974 (former teammate Bobby Tolanled the league in steals in by|1970).
Overall, Brock batted .293 in 19 seasons, amassing a total of 3023 hits.
Awards, honors and life after baseball
Name = Lou Brock
Number = 20
Team = St. Louis Cardinals
Year = 1979|Brock won the by|1967 National League
Babe RuthAward, the by|1974 Major League Player of the Year Award, the by|1975 Roberto Clemente Award, the by|1977 Lou GehrigMemorial Award, and the by|1979 Hutch Award.
His number 20 was retired by the St. Louis Cardinals.
He was inducted into the
Baseball Hall of Famein by|1985. In by|1999, he ranked Number 58 on " The Sporting News"' list of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players, and was nominated as a finalist for the Major League Baseball All-Century Team.
Brock was inducted into the
St. Louis Walk of Fame.
After retiring from baseball, Brock prospered as a businessman, especially as a florist in the
St. Louis, Missouriarea. Lou Brock is a member of Phi Beta SigmaFraternity Inc. Brock still regularly appears at Cardinals games. When he steps onto the field he is always greeted by a loud, low-pitched cheer of "Loooouuuuuuuuuuuu". This may sound like "Boooo" to those unfamiliar with the team, and the town's love for Lou Brock.
Brock also lent his name to a unique rainhat, shaped like a miniature umbrella and to be worn at games during showers in lieu of retreating to the concourse. The product was called the "Brockabrella". There is no indication whether its name was in any way influenced by Brock's contemporary, utility man John Boccabella.
Brock and his wife are both ordained ministers serving at Abundant Life Fellowship Church in St. Louis. [http://loubrock.com/ministry.htm]
Brock's speed was referenced in the song
Check the Rhimeby the pioneering " jazz rap" hip-hop ensemble A Tribe Called Quest
On December 5, 2006 he was recognized for his accomplishments on and off of the field when he received the
Bobby Bragan Youth Foundation"Lifetime Achievement Award".
Even though his stolen base record has been surpassed, the
National Leaguehonors each stolen base leader with the Lou Brock award.
Top 500 home run hitters of all time
List of major league players with 2,000 hits
List of Major League Baseball players with 400 doubles
List of Major League Baseball players with 100 triples
List of Major League Baseball players with 1000 runs
List of Major League Baseball players with 400 stolen bases
List of Major League Baseball players with 500 stolen bases
3000 hit club
Hitting for the cycle
List of Major League Baseball leaders in career stolen bases
List of Major League Baseball runs scored champions
List of Major League Baseball stolen base champions
List of Major League Baseball doubles champions
List of Major League Baseball triples champions
Major League Baseball titles leaders
Lou Brock was also mentioned in Everlast's "Whitey Ford Sings the Blues" and A Tribe Called Quest's "Check The Rhyme"
One of his most famus sayings was "Show me a guy who is afraid to look bad and i'll show you a guy you can beat every time."
title = National League Stolen Base Champion
years = 1966-1969
Maury Wills Bobby Tolan
Bobby Tolan Davey Lopes
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