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1934 St. Louis Cardinals team photo

1934 St. Louis Cardinals team photo

1934 St. Louis Cardinals team photo

1934 World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals

1934 World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals. 

The Gashouse Gang

The Gashouse Gang was a nickname applied to the Cardinals team of 1934. The Cardinals, by most accounts, earned this nickname from the team's generally very shabby appearance and rough-and-tumble tactics. An opponent once stated that the Cardinals players usually went into the field in unwashed, dirty, and smelly uniforms, which alone spread horror among their rivals.

According to one account, scrappy shortstop Leo Durocher coined the term. He and his teammates were speaking derisively of the American League, and the consensus was that the Redbirds – should they prevail in the National League race – would handle whoever won the AL pennant. "Why, they wouldn't even let us in that league over there," Durocher, who had played for the New York Yankees, observed. "They think we're just a bunch of gashousers." The phrase "gas house" referred to plants that manufacturedtown gas for lighting and cooking from coal, which were common fixtures in US cities prior to the widespread use of natural gas. The plants were noted for their foul smell and were typically located near railroad yards in the poorest neighborhood in the city.

Led by playing manager Frankie Frisch and the hard-nosed Durocher, as well as stars like Joe Medwick, Ripper Collins, Pepper Martin, and brothers Dizzy and Paul Dean, the '34 Cardinals won 95 games, the NL pennant, and the World Series in seven games over the Detroit Tigers.

The team featured five regulars who hit at least .300, a 30-game winner in Dizzy Dean (the last National League pitcher to win 30 games in a single season, and the last pitcher in Major League Baseball to do so until Denny McLain accomplished the feat for the 1968 Detroit Tigers), and four All-Stars, including player-manager Frisch. Not among the All-Stars was Collins, the first baseman who led the team in 16 offensive categories, with stats like a .333 batting average, a .615 slugging percentage, 35 home runs, and 128runs batted in.

By TBP

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1934, 1934 World Series, St. Louis Cardinals

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