Moving on to the actual team checklists, we begin with the 1982 World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals. I am going to try something a little different with the teams in 1982, I am going to name the MVP, Cy Young, Rookie of the Year, and Most interesting non-Topps card for each team. This will save me from trying to think of something to write about the Indians or Rangers or some other team that was largely uninteresting in 1982.
I am going with Lonnie Smith here. Everybody likes to give credit for acquiring Ozzie Smith as being the final puzzle piece for this title, but Lonnie Smith was acquired in a three team trade in November 1981, and led the entire NL in runs scored, and led the Cardinals in stolen bases and batting average. He was also third on the team in RBI. The Cardinals in 1982 were a team built on speed and Lonnie Smith was the speediest, so I am giving him the MVP title.
Honorable mention goes to George Hendrick who led the team in home runs and RBIs.
I was debating between Joaquin Andujar and Bruce Sutter. Andujar had a much lower ERA and pitched more than twice as many innings, so I am going with him.
Rookie of the Year
No question, Willie McGee. The future MVP and batting champion played his first season as the starting center fielder for a World Series champ. Unfortunately we have to wait until 1983 for McGee cards.
Most interesting non-Topps card
Gene Roof, listed as Phil Roof on his 1982 Donruss card, got the least amount of plate appearances by a non-pitcher for this team. He had cups of coffee with the Cardinals and Expos from 1981-1983. He is currently a coach in the Tigers farm system.
I wonder where Donruss got the idea to put the name "Phil Roof" on this card. Gene's full name isn't even remotely tied to "Phil". There was a Phil Roof who played. Phil Roof is probably the only player to play for both the Milwaukee Braves and the Toronto Blue Jays, so he had a long career, but 1977 was his last season. According to baseball-reference Gene and Phil are related.
Starters (at least 240 PA or majority time playing a position, this eliminates deciding who to list for platoon situations and shows importance of super-subs on teams)
Starting Pitchers (majority of games started and at least 80 IP...this is roughly 10-12 starts at least)
Relief Pitchers (at least 48 IP, some starters get listed here occasionally)
Other Players (everybody else, in order of plate appearances and innings pitched)