Nebraska Minor League Baseball
American Assocation
Omaha Cardinals 1955

American Association
President:Edwards S. Doherty
Standings Wins--- Losses- GB Attended Manager
Minneapolis 92 62 -- 177,307 Bill Rigney
Omaha Cardinals 84 70 8 316,012 Johnny Keane
Denver 83 71 9 426,248 Ralph Houk
Louisville 83 71 9 139,948 Red Marion
Toledo 81 73 11 187,911 George Selkirk
St.Paul 75 78 16.5 118,318 Max Macon
Indianapolis 67 86 24.5 129,517 Kerby Farrell
Charleston 50 104 42 108,431 Danny Murtaugh/Vern Rapp

BA:Rance Pless, Minneapolis, .337
Runs:Rance Pless, Minneapolis, 116
Hits:Rance Pless, Minneapolis, 200
RBIs:Marv Throneberry, Denver, 117
HRs:Marv Throneberry, Denver, 36
Wins:Al Worthington, Minneapolis, 19
SOs:Jerry Casale, Louisville, 186
ERA: Willard Schmidt, Omaha, 2.56

Omaha in 1955 became a "AAA" city. They moved up from the class "A" Western League to the "AAA" American Association. A combination of a new million dollar ballpark, a growing city, good attendance and a city administration interested in baseball led to the Cardinals moving Omaha from their "A" franchise to their "AAA" franchise.

Omaha wound up in second place in their initial foray into the American Association. The team was sixth in batting, third in fielding and had one of the better pitching staffs in the league with Willard Schmidt leading the way.

Willard Schmidt returned to Omaha in 1955. He was a leading pitcher for the class "A" Omaha Cardinals in 1951. He spent the 1952 and 1953 with the St. Louis Cardinals. In 1955 he led the American Association with a 2.56 ERA and a 12-5 record. He was promoted to St. Louis at the end of the year and played with the St. Louis Cardinals through the 1959 season.

James Pearce , from North Carolina, had played in the majors from 1949 through the beginning of the 1955 season. He was 12-5 for Omaha in 1955.

Joe "Little Joe" Presko made his major league debut in 1951. The Kansas City born righty played with St. Louis through the 1954 season. In 1955 he was assigned to Omaha and was 6-10 in 42 appearances. He was back in the majors in 1957 with Detroit and played a total of six years in the majors.

Bobby Tiefenauer from Desloge MO was signed as an 18 year old by St. Louis in 1948. He played in the show in 1952 and also pitched in 18 games in St. Louis in 1955. He played most of the season in Omaha and was 5-7 in 33 games. He was back in the majors in 1960 and played in the majors through 1968.

Major League All Star

Stuart Miller was signed by St. Louis in 1949. He started with Salisbury in 1949. In 1950 he played for Hamilton and in 1951 he was with Winston Salem. He started the 1952 season with Columbus and was 11-5 when he was called up to the Cardinals. He played for the Cards from 1952-1954. In 1955 he was assigned to Omaha where he had a 17-14 record with 161 k's in 41 games. He went back to St. Louis in 1956 and pitched in the major leagues through the 1968 season. He was an All Star selection in 1961.

Topps 1953

James Willis had a short major league career with the Cubs in 1953 and 1954. The 28 year old from Doyline LA was 9-3 in 26 games.

Memo Luna was a 25 year old lefty from Tacubaya Mexico. He pitched in one game for St. Louis in 1954. In 1955 he appeared in 33 games for Omaha and had a 4-4 record.

Gary Blaylock had played in Omaha as a 20 year old in 1952. He was 13-9 that year for Omaha in the Western League. In 1955 he returned to Omaha and had a 2-5 record in "AAA" ball. The Clarkton Missouri native made it to the majors in 1959 with St. Louis and the Yankees.

Robert E. Clear had led the Omaha team in the Western League in 1954 with 20 wins. He remained in Omaha as the team moved to the American Association. He was 1-10 in 27 games. The Denver native also played for Omaha in 1950. He played for at least 17 different minor league teams during his career. After his playing days were over he coached in the Pirates and Angels organizations.

Gordon Jones split time between Omaha and St. Louis in 1955. He appeared in 15 games with St. Louis and had a 4-4 record with Omaha. He was signed by St. Louis in 1949 as a 19 year old from Portland Oregon. He made his major league debut in 1954 and played in the majors through the 1965 season.

First base for Omaha in 1955 was split between a number of players. Thomas Edison Alston played 92 games at first and 20 at third. He also played in 13 games in St. Louis. The Greensboro North Carolina native averaged .274 for the year. He played in the majors for 4 years. He played Negro League ball in 1948 with the Greensboro North Carolina Red Wings. In 1950 and 1951 he played for Indian Head Rockets in the Western Canada League. In 1952 he played for San Diego in the Pacific Coast League and moved to Rochester in the International League for 1954. In 1954 he became the first African American to play for the St. Louis Cardinals. HE played for Omaha in 1955 and 1956 with short stays with the parent Cardinals each year. He was also the subject of a ballad by Bruce Piephoff about his playing time in St. Louis. (Vol 2-Diamond Cuts)

Maurice Mozzali split his time between first and the outfield. The lefty had a .270 average for the year.

Fred Koenig played in 32 games and averaged .247.

Major League All Star

Second base in 1955 was held down by a 23 year old from Corinth Mississippi. Don Blasingame was signed as an amateur free agent in 1953. The lefty averaged .307 for Omaha in 132 games and also played in 5 games for St. Louis in September. He played in the majors from 1955-1966. He was a Major League All Star in 1958.
Topps 1956

Dick Schofield played in 107 games for Omaha in 1955. The short stop spent part of 1953, 1954, 1955 and 1956 with St. Louis. The Springfield Illinois native averaged .273 with Omaha in 1955 and .295 in 1956.

Gerald Thomas played in 106 games for Omaha in 1955 and he averaged .247. Walt Lammers played in 130 games and averaged .248.

Dick Rand put on the mask for 108 games in Omaha in 1955. The catcher averaged .257 for the season. The Californian had caught in 9 games for St. Louis in 1953 and he also had a cup of coffee with St. Louis during the 1955 season. His best major league year was 1957 where he caught 60 games for Pittsburg.

Percy Riggan backed up Rand at catcher in 1955 and averaged .241 while playing in 77 games.

Frank Carswell led the Omaha franchise with a .351 average in 1955. The veteran from Palestine Texas had a 16 game major league career with Detroit in 1953.

Dan Schell from Fostoria MI was also a heavy hitter for Omaha in 1955. He played in 131 games and had a .326 average. He also played in 2 games for Philadelphia in 1955 and in 92 games in 1954.

Charlie Peete showed real promise in 1955. He played in 99 games and averaged .317. The next year he led the American Association with a .350 average.

Eddie Phillips was a St. Louis native who played in 9 major league games in 1953. In 1955 he averaged .232 for the Omaha Cardinals.

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