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Marty Marion: 1917-2011

Mar 16, 2011, 12:52 PM EDT

marty marion cardinals card

Marty Marion, an eight-time All-Star who spent 11 seasons as the Cardinals’ starting shortstop and won the NL MVP in 1944, has passed away at age 94.

Marion’s reputation was always much bigger than his numbers, even during his MVP season, as he hit just .267 with six homers and a .686 OPS that ranked 64th in the league. Despite that he beat out various sluggers, including teammate Stan Musial, and also finished among the top 10 in MVP voting with similarly modest numbers in 1942 and 1945.

Nicknamed “The Octopus” for his prowess defensively, Marion was one of the first “big” shortstops at 6-foot-2 and 175 pounds. In fact, prior to his debut in 1940 there were just three shortstops in baseball history listed as taller than six feet.

St. Louis had zero losing seasons with Marion at shortstop and won three World Series titles.

  1. spudchukar - Mar 16, 2011 at 1:02 PM

    The 40’s Red Birds were a pitching and defense domination. In Cardinal lore, many still argue that Marty Marion was every bit Ozzie’s equal. Long before Ripken and Belanger, Marion epitomized the “lanky”, “rangy” monikers as Aaron acknowledges. He was an icon on and off the field. He will be missed. R.I.P.

    • umrguy42 - Mar 16, 2011 at 2:34 PM

      As a Cards fan, I’m ashamed to admit I didn’t know of him (though he was WELL before my time). RIP to a Cards great…

  2. BC - Mar 16, 2011 at 1:05 PM

    Wow. Lived a long life. RIP. Wonder if there are any MLB players left that are older than him.

    • The Rabbit - Mar 16, 2011 at 4:28 PM

      If I look out the window, my neighbor, Preacher Roe (DOB 2/1916) is still OK.
      Last fall, he was regularly seen on the town square holding hands with his lady friend of similar age. Very nice man.

  3. quinnsc13 - Mar 23, 2011 at 1:29 PM

    not to pop your bubble, Rabbit….but ….Preacher passed in Nov. of 2008…and he was a very nice man.

    • The Rabbit - Mar 23, 2011 at 1:58 PM

      Shows you I don’t get out much. His house is for sale and it’s very nice.

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