Saturday, May 16, 2015

May 16, 1999: Lankford Walks It Off

     On May 16, 1999, Ray Lankford led the Cardinals to victory with a walk off home run that beat the Dodgers 5-4 in St. Louis. It was his second big blast of the day. The Redbirds found themselves in a 4-1 hole after two, before newcomer Edgar Renteria put one in the seats in the third, which was the first long ball he would hit with the Birds on the Bat across his chest. Lankford's first blast was a solo shot in the sixth that made the score 4-3 Dodgers, which set the stage for some ninth inning heroics. The table was set for those heroics with a one out walk to Mark McGwire, which brought Ray to the dish representing the winning run. With one swing of the bat he was exactly that, as he parked a Jeff Shaw pitch over the wall in right-center. Lankford hit 238 home runs in a career that spanned over 15 seasons. 228 of those came as a member of the Cardinals. The walk off blast in '99 was his third and final walk off blast of his career, with the first two coming in 1994. Lankford's 228 home runs rank fifth in franchise history. He also ranks in the top ten in many other categories, such as games played, runs scored, doubles and RBI's. Lankford will forever be a Cardinal and I know at least one fan that would love to see him honored in the Cardinals Hall of Fame and Museum in downtown St. Louis.

Check out the box score here:

You can also view the numbers of  the all time franchise leaders here:

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