Player of the Past: Ernie Broglio
Ernest Gilbert Broglio
Born: August 13, 1937 in Berkeley, California
Major League Debut: April 11, 1959
Final Game: July 2, 1966
Ernie Broglio posted a 21-9 record with a 2.74 ERA in his second major league season for the Cardinals in 1960. He had a combined 21-21 record over the 1961 and 1962 seasons.
Then he rebounded for a 18-8 season in 1963 with a 2.99 ERA. He was 3-5 in the 1964 season when he was traded to the Chicago Cubs with Doug Clemens and Bobby Shantz with Lou Brock, Jack Spring and Paul Toth going to the St. Louis Cardinals.
The key players in the trade were Broglio and Brock. Broglio was 70-55 in six seasons with the Cardinals but was a mediocre 7-19 with the Cubs and would have an ERA over 6.00 in his last two seasons with the Cubs. He pitched his last game for the Cubs 25 months after the trade was made.
Meanwhile Lou Brock immediately helped the Cardinals despite playing in only 103 games hitting .348, an OBP of .387 and slugged .527 while stealing 33 bases. He was a huge factor in the Cardinals winning the NL pennant in 1964 and going on to win the World Series against the Yankees. Brock hit .300 in the 1964 World Series and homered and drove in five runs.
Starting with the 1965 season Brock would steal at least 50 bases for 12 consecutive seasons. Although he was not known as a home run hitter he hit one of the longest home runs ever hit in the Polo Grounds.
Baseball-reference.com compares his stats to that of only three Hall of Famers – Max Carey, Rod Carew and Zack Wheat. That is surprising considering he had 3023 hits and 938 stolen bases during his career. Johnny Damon is the only active player that has stats compared to those of Brock.
Brock may be one of the worst fielding outfielders in the Hall of Fame with 196 errors in 19 seasons averaging 10 errors a season. He made 19 errors in the 1966 season.
Last season Justin Upton led all major league outfielders with 12 errors in 136 games while Alfonso Soriano made 11 errors in 116 games. Upton made his 12 errors in 310 chances while it took Soriano only 219 chances to make his 11 errors while posting a .950 fielding percentage.
Jason Bay led all outfielders who played in at least 100 games with no errors in 325 total chances.
Back to Broglio and Brock….At the time the trade probably looked good to the Cubs since Broglio had posted 18 and 21 win seasons for the Cardinals with the 18 win season the year before the trade.
Brock had stolen only 50 bases for the Cubs but in his first four seasons with the Cardinals he stole an amazing 225 stolen bases.
Broglio would only pitch in eight major league seasons and pitched his last major league game at the age of 30. Brock played until he was 40 because he needed that last season to reach the 3,000 hit plateau.