|Born:January 31, 1926|
Greensboro, North Carolina, U.S.
|Died: December 30, 1993 67) (aged|
Winston-Salem, North Carolina, U.S.
|April 13, 1954, for the St. Louis Cardinals|
|Last MLB appearance|
|September 29, 1957, for the St. Louis Cardinals|
|Runs batted in||36|
Thomas Edison Alston (January 31,1926 – December 30,1993) was a Major League Baseball first baseman who played for the St. Louis Cardinals from 1954 to 1957,the first African-American to do so. A native of Greensboro,North Carolina,he stood 6'5" (200 cm) and weighed 210 pounds (95 kg).
Alston was acquired by St. Louis via a trade with the San Diego Padres of the Pacific Coast League,where he played in 180 games in 1953,on January 26,1954,after team president Gussie Busch told manager Eddie Stanky to find a black player. Not only did Busch think excluding blacks from baseball was morally wrong,his company Anheuser–Busch,which had bought the team a year earlier to keep them from moving to Milwaukee,sold more beer to African-Americans than any other brewery,leading him to fear the effect of a boycott.
Busch was,however,somewhat disappointed by Alston. When he reported to the Cardinals,the team learned he was two years older than the Padres had claimed. Busch demanded they return $20,000 the Cardinals had included with the trade to account for two seasons that Busch believed the team could not get from Alston.
When he made his Major League debut (April 13,1954 at Sportsman's Park),he became the first black player in St. Louis Cardinals history. He played in 66 games during his rookie season,batting .246 with 4 home runs and 34 runs batted in. After that,he got into 25 more games over the course of the next three seasons. He spent most of his major league career splitting time between the majors and the Class AAA Omaha Cardinals,where he had a .306 batting average and 21 home runs in 1956.
Career totals for 91 games include a .244 batting average (66-for-271),4 home runs,36 RBI,30 runs scored,and an on-base percentage of .311. In his 81 appearances at first base,he handled 680 out of 689 total chances successfully for a fielding percentage of .987,just slightly under the league average during his era.
Alston's career was handicapped by neurasthenia and other mental disorders which forced his hospitalization after his playing career was over.
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The St. Louis Cardinals,a professional baseball franchise based in St. Louis,Missouri,compete in the National League (NL) of Major League Baseball (MLB). Brewing magnate Gussie Busch's 37-year-long ownership of the club ended with his death in 1989,and his brewery,Anheuser-Busch (AB) took over. In 1995,an investment group led by Drew Baur and William DeWitt,Jr.,purchased the team and have owned the club since. Shortstop Ozzie Smith –nicknamed "The Wizard" –collected a staggering array of defensive records and awards while performing acrobatic spectacles such as somersaults and flips that mesmerized Cardinal and non-Cardinal fans alike. In 1998,Mark McGwire and the Chicago Cubs' Sammy Sosa collocated national attention with their chase of Roger Maris' single-season home run record of 61. In addition,McGwire also set numerous team home run records. For the 1990s,the Cardinals captured one division title and finished above .500 five times for a .488 winning percentage
The St. Louis Cardinals,a professional baseball franchise based in St. Louis,Missouri,compete in the National League (NL) of Major League Baseball (MLB). After decades of early futility in the National League,St. Louis baseball encountered a renaissance with 11 World Series titles and 18 National League pennants since 1926. Sam Breadon's purchase of the majority stake in the club in 1920 spurred this revival;he then assumed the role as team president and assigned the young,enterprising Branch Rickey as his business manager,functioning as a prototype of today's general manager. In his tenure as owner until 1947,Breadon's Cardinals won nine NL pennants and six World Series titles. During this era in Cardinals franchise history,they also totaled 2,898 wins and 2,171 losses in the regular season for a .572 winning percentage.
The St. Louis Cardinals,a professional baseball franchise based in St. Louis,Missouri,compete in the National League (NL) of Major League Baseball (MLB). In 1953,the Anheuser-Busch (AB) brewery bought the Cardinals,and August "Gussie" Busch became team president. Busch's influence is still seen today as three of the Cardinals' home stadia are or were named some form of Busch Stadium. Three World Series titles in the 1960s and 1980s,contrasted with missing the playoffs for the entirety of the 1950s and 1970s checkered the team's success distinctly by decades. However,the team still remained generally competitive in each of those decades - they did not see a last place finish until 1990,which had been the first since 1918. With Busch's tenure as owner,the Cardinals also won six NL pennants.
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