As you can imagine for the purpose of this list we only care about the first third, which incredibly almost never happened.
Mize was tearing it up in the Minors and the Cincinnati Reds approached the Cardinals to buy his rights providing he could provide a physical. That was in 1934, the year where he tore his hamstring and the Reds voided the deal a couple of months later. Many thought that at the age of 22 that Johnny Mize was done in baseball but since we are writing about him here, clearly he wasn’t.
He would crack the main roster in 1936 and from 1937 to 1942 he would become one of the most feared hitters in the National League. Mize had a 25 Home Run season in 1937 with a .364/.427/.595 Slash Line but he improved his power numbers while keeping his Batting Average and OBP over the next three seasons. Mize was the National League Home Run Champion in 1939 and 1940, while also winning the Batting Title in 1939. He would also lead his league in Slugging Percentage and OPS three years in a row from 1938 to 1940 and he was the runner-up for the MVP in 1939 and 1940.
Mize would be traded to the New York Giants after 1941 but in the time he was with the Redbirds he would record a Slash Line of .336/.419/.600, which was just an incredible run.He would be inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1981 via the Veteran’s Committee, and in 2014, he was inducted as part of the first class of the Cardinals Hall of Fame.
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