Atlanta Braves history: Red Schoendienst and the 57 World Series
By Fred Owens
The World Series
The Braves went 37 and 18 after that, finishing 95 – 59 eight games ahead of the Cardinals. They powered past weak teams while Spahn, Burdette and Buhl took care of shutting down the best.
They won the series because Lew Burdette refused to lose
Schoendienst had a quiet series, hitting .278. The following year his bat regressed but the Braves returned to the series. Schoendienst hit .300/.344/.467/.810 that series but the Braves lost in seven.
That offseason Schoendienst was diagnosed with tuberculosis and underwent a partial pneumonectomy (the removal of part of a lung) in February 1959. Doctors said he would never play professional baseball again but they were wrong.
Schoendienst returned to play five games with the Braves in September and another 68 in 1960 before returning to the Cardinals in 1961.
That’s a wrap
Red Schoendienst wasn’t the only reason the Braves made it to the World series but his trade was the domino that made all the pieces fall into place.
Covington got his chance because Thomson went to the Giants for Schoendienst. Hazel got the call because the Braves stayed with the Cardinals instead of dropping off as the had in the past.
I’m not trying to steal Red Schoendienst. He went into the Hall of Fame as a Cardinal and he remained a part of the Cardinals until the end. It’s ironic that the Cardinals trading Red before the two of the best years in his career and his presence on the Braves cost them the NL Championship in 1957.
Next: Swiss cheese or a pin hole?
Atlanta Braves fans should know all of the heroes associated with the franchise. Red Schoendienst is a Braves hero. Now you know.