It may surprise some baseball fans to know that when the St. Louis Cardinals fired Mike Matheny on July 14, he departed as the fifth-winningest manager in the storied franchise’s history.
Though his squad struggled to a 47-46 mark before the axe fell this season, Matheny still compiled a career 591-473 mark in 1,064 games over almost seven years. And his career Cardinals winning percentage of .555 was better than that of Hall of Famers Tony LaRussa, Red Schoendienst, Whitey Herzog, and Branch Rickey.
In fact, only Billy Southworth and HoFer Frankie Frisch recorded higher career winning percentages than Matheny. Here’s a closer look at the career records of all the skippers who have managed at least 800 games in Cardinal red.
One other Hall of Famer manager who guided the Cardinals was Joe Torre, though he didn’t earn his trip to Cooperstown because of his time in St. Louis. With Torre as manager from 1990-1995, the Cardinals went 351-354 (.498 winning percentage) before he was fired in June 1995. Of course, he was hired by George Steinbrenner to manage the New York Yankees for the 1996 season and his path to Hall of Fame was paved from there. H&A
Cover photo courtesy Bill Greenblatt, St. Louis Cardinals