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Mike Shannon
Shannon in 1983
Third baseman / Right fielder
Born: (1939-07-15) July 15, 1939 (age 83)
St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.
Batted: Right
Threw: Right
MLB debut
September 11, 1962, for the St. Louis Cardinals
Last MLB appearance
August 12, 1970, for the St. Louis Cardinals
MLB statistics
Batting average.255
Home runs68
Runs batted in367
Career highlights and awards

Thomas Michael Shannon (born July 15, 1939[1]) is an American former professional baseball infielder / outfielder who spent his entire Major League Baseball (MLB) career playing for the St. Louis Cardinals (19621970). Shannon worked as a Cardinals radio broadcaster from 1972 to 2021.

Shannon was raised in St. Louis, Missouri, and was an integral part of some of the Cards’ most successful seasons, during the 1960s.

He was the proprietor of Mike Shannon's Steaks and Seafood restaurant in downtown St. Louis until it closed on January 30, 2016. Shannon still operates two Mike Shannon's Grill locations, in Edwardsville, Illinois, and at St. Louis Lambert International Airport, which is run by his grandson, Justin VanMatre.[2]

Early life

Shannon was born and raised in south St. Louis at 7045 Winona Avenue, the second-oldest of six children of Thomas A. Shannon and Elizabeth W. Richason Shannon.[3] Shannon's father was a St. Louis police officer and after getting his law degree, worked in the prosecuting attorney's office before becoming the Prosecuting Attorney for the City of St. Louis in the early 1970s.

Shannon attended grade school at Epiphany of Our Lord Catholic School, and graduated from Christian Brothers College High School in 1957. He was the Missouri High School Player of the Year in both football and basketball his senior year, and remains the only athlete to win both awards in the same year.

He attended the University of Missouri before leaving in 1958 to begin his professional baseball career after signing with Bing Devine, general manager of the St. Louis Cardinals. Shannon, who believed himself to be a better football player, has said that if football players were paid better during his era, he probably would have stayed at Missouri and sought a professional football career. His former coach Frank Broyles said that had he stayed in school, Shannon might have won the Heisman Trophy.[4]

Playing career

Shannon began his big league career with the St. Louis Cardinals in 1962. In 1964, he became the team's regular right fielder, shifting to third base (in order to make room for the newly acquired Roger Maris) in 1967. Shannon played in three World Series for the Cardinals. He hit a game-tying two-run homer off Whitey Ford in Game 1 of the 1964 World Series against the New York Yankees, which St. Louis won 9-5.[5]

In 1966, Shannon batted .288 in 137 games with 16 home runs and 64 RBI. He was named NL Player of the Month in July (.395, 7 HR, 23 RBI). For 1968, he batted .266 in 156 games, with 15 home runs and 79 RBI; such stats were enough to earn him seventh place in MVP voting, behind teammates Bob Gibson, Curt Flood, and Lou Brock, as well as Giants Willie McCovey and Juan Marichal, and Pete Rose of the Reds.[6]

In Game 3 of the 1967 World Series against the Boston Red Sox, Shannon hit a home run off Gary Bell. In Game 7 of the 1968 World Series against the Detroit Tigers, Shannon's solo home run off Mickey Lolich was the Cardinals' only run off Lolich as the Tigers clinched. Shannon also hit the last home run in the original Busch Stadium (Sportsman's Park) in 1966 and the first one for the Cardinals in the second Busch Stadium (Busch Memorial Stadium). In 1970, he contracted nephritis, a kidney disease, which ended his playing career.[7]

Broadcasting career

Shannon's Cardinal Hall of Fame speech in 2014.
Shannon's Cardinal Hall of Fame speech in 2014.

Shannon joined the Cardinals' promotional staff in 1971; a year later he moved to the team's radio booth. For almost three decades Shannon was paired with Hall of Fame announcer Jack Buck on AM 1120 KMOX and the Cardinals Radio Network. After Buck's death in 2002, Shannon became the team's lead radio voice, teaming with Joel Meyers (2002), Wayne Hagin (2003–2005), and John Rooney (2006–2021). In 2006, he moved to KTRS (550) which had won broadcasting rights for the Cardinals and ownership of the station. For the 2011 season, KMOX regained the rights for Cardinals broadcasting and Shannon returned to his former employer.[8]

Shannon received a local Emmy Award for his work on Cardinal broadcasts in 1985, and was inducted into the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame in 1999.[9] He was named Missouri Sportscaster of the Year in 2002 and 2003.[10]

On Friday nights after a Cardinals home game, Shannon traditionally hosted a sports chat show from the Cardinals' home radio booth.

Shannon's signature home run call is "Here's a long one to left/center/right, get up baby, get up, get up...oh yeah!"[11]

During the 1980s, Shannon worked as a backup analyst behind Joe Garagiola and Tony Kubek for NBC's Game of the Week telecasts, typically working with play-by-play man Jay Randolph.[12]

Counting his tenure in the minor leagues, Shannon spent 64 years—nearly his entire adult life—with the Cardinals in some capacity.[13] He also called Cardinals games longer than anyone except Buck.

Mike Shannon interviewing James "Cool Papa" Bell in 1986.
Mike Shannon interviewing James "Cool Papa" Bell in 1986.
The KMOX radio booth is named after Shannon.
The KMOX radio booth is named after Shannon.

On August 8, 2014, Shannon was inducted into the St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame.[14]

From 2016 until his retirement in 2021, Shannon only called home games for the Cardinals.[15] On January 14, 2021, Shannon announced that the 2021 season, his 50th in the broadcast booth, would be his last.[16] On October 3, 2021, the Cardinals honored Shannon in a farewell ceremony.[17]


  1. ^ "Mike Shannon - Missouri Sports Hall of Fame". Missouri Sports Hall of Fame. Retrieved 19 May 2021.
  2. ^ Mike Shannon's restaurant downtown to close Jan. 30
  3. ^ "Mike Shannon". Society for American Baseball Research (SABR). Retrieved 19 May 2021.
  4. ^ "STLtoday - Sports - Other Sports". Archived from the original on 2007-02-09. Retrieved 2007-02-06.
  5. ^ "How Mike Shannon put a charge into 1964 Cardinals". Retrieved 13 May 2021.
  6. ^ "1968 Awards Voting". Sports Reference, LLC. Retrieved 13 May 2021.
  7. ^ Mohler, Andy. "Mike Shannon's brush with death". KSDK. Retrieved 13 May 2021.
  8. ^ Caeser, Dan. "Mike Shannon entering final season as St. Louis Cardinals' broadcaster?". The Register Mail. Retrieved 19 May 2021.
  9. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-09-28. Retrieved 2007-08-20.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  10. ^ "Missouri | NSSA". Archived from the original on 2014-03-16. Retrieved 2014-03-16.
  11. ^ Karp, Jeremy (5 September 2016). "The Cooperstown case for Mike Shannon". Arch City Media. Retrieved 19 May 2021.
  12. ^ "Broadcasters". MLB Advanced Media, LP. Retrieved 19 May 2021.
  13. ^ "Mike Shannon Stats". Sports Reference, LLC. Retrieved 19 May 2021.
  14. ^ "2014 Cardinals Hall of Fame Induction Class Announced". Cards Conclave. 30 April 2014. Retrieved 13 May 2021.
  15. ^ Hummel, Rick (January 19, 2016). "Mike Shannon no longer will broadcast Cardinals road games". Retrieved April 3, 2016.
  16. ^ Hummel, Rick. "Cardinals plan season-long celebration for retiring broadcaster Shannon".; The St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Retrieved 30 April 2021.
  17. ^ Silver, Zachary. "Cards honor Shannon in touching ceremony".; MLB. Retrieved 3 October 2021.

External links

Preceded by Major League Player of the Month
July, 1966
Succeeded by
This page was last edited on 15 January 2023, at 19:52
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