December 12, 1994: Tom Henke signs deal to play his final season in St. Louis

Just a couple weeks shy of his 37th birthday, baseball had taken Tom Henke from Texas to Toronto and back again. Now the 6-foot-5 right-hander was ready to return to his roots. On December 12, 1994, Henke signed a one-year, $2-million contract to serve as the Cardinals’ closer in 1995. The 13-year major-league veteran hadContinue reading “December 12, 1994: Tom Henke signs deal to play his final season in St. Louis”

December 22, 2011: Cardinals sign Carlos Beltran in wake of Pujols’ departure

After Albert Pujols signed a record 10-year, $254-million contract with the Angels following the 2011 season, the Cardinals had a short list of free agents who could fill their sudden need for an impact bat. Carlos Beltran’s name was at the top of the list. On December 22, 2011, the Cardinals signed the 1999 AmericanContinue reading “December 22, 2011: Cardinals sign Carlos Beltran in wake of Pujols’ departure”

December 20, 1999: Cardinals finally get their man in trade for Fernando Vina

After more than a year, the Cardinals finally had their leadoff hitter. On December 20, 1999, the Cardinals finalized a trade to send pitcher Juan Acevedo and two minor league players to be named later to the Brewers for Fernando Vina. On June 13, 2000, they completed the trade by sending catcher Eliezer Alfonzo andContinue reading “December 20, 1999: Cardinals finally get their man in trade for Fernando Vina”

December 18, 2004: Cardinals trade for Mark Mulder

On the heels of the Cardinals’ loss to the Red Sox in the 2004 World Series, their offseason began with the departure of several prominent players. Shortstop Edgar Renteria signed with Boston. Catcher Mike Matheny went to the Giants, second baseman Tony Womack signed with the Yankees, and pitcher Woody Williams returned to the PadresContinue reading “December 18, 2004: Cardinals trade for Mark Mulder”

December 16, 1988: Cardinals get Milt Thompson in trade with Phillies

  From the moment he arrived in St. Louis, the Cardinals saw Milt Thompson as a Whitey Herzog type of player. On December 16, 1988, the Cardinals traded outfielder Curt Ford and catcher Steve Lake to the Phillies for Thompson. A former second-round pick of the Braves in 1979, Thompson was expected to serve asContinue reading “December 16, 1988: Cardinals get Milt Thompson in trade with Phillies”