Ozzie Smith

Ozzie Smith
Ozzie Smith

Born: December 26, 1954 (1954-12-26) (age 56)
Mobile, Alabama
Batted: Switch Threw: Right 
MLB debut
April 7, 1978 for the San Diego Padres
Last MLB appearance
October 17, 1996 for the St. Louis Cardinals
Career statistics
Batting average     .262
Hits     2,460
Runs batted in     793
Stolen bases     580
Career highlights and awards
Member of the National
Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Baseball Hall of Fame Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg Empty Star.svg
Induction     2002
Vote     91.7% (first ballot)

Osborne Earl "Ozzie" Smith (born December 26, 1954) is an American former baseball shortstop who played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the San Diego Padres and St. Louis Cardinals from 1978 to 1996. Nicknamed "The Wizard" for his defensive brilliance, Smith set major league records for career assists (8,375) and double plays (1,590) by a shortstop (the latter since broken by Omar Vizquel), as well as the National League (NL) record with 2,511 career games at the position; Smith won the NL Gold Glove Award for play at shortstop for 13 consecutive seasons (1980–1992). A 15-time All-Star, he accumulated 2,460 hits and 580 stolen bases during his career, and won the NL Silver Slugger Award as the best-hitting shortstop in 1987. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility in 2002.

Smith was born in Mobile, Alabama, but his family moved to Watts, Los Angeles when he was six years old. While participating in childhood athletic activities, Smith developed quick reflexes; he went on to play baseball in high school and college, at Los Angeles' Locke High School and Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo respectively. Drafted as an amateur player by the Padres, Smith made his major league debut in 1978. He quickly established himself as an outstanding fielder, and later became known for performing backflips on special occasions while taking his position at the beginning of a game. Smith won his first Gold Glove Award in 1980, and made his first All-Star Game appearance in 1981. When conflict with Padres' ownership developed, he was traded to the Cardinals for shortstop Garry Templeton in 1982.

Upon joining the Cardinals, Smith helped the team win the 1982 World Series. Three years later, his game-winning home run during Game 5 of the 1985 National League Championship Series prompted broadcaster Jack Buck's "Go crazy, folks!" play-by-play call. Despite a rotator cuff injury during the 1985 season, Smith posted career highs in multiple offensive categories in 1987. Smith continued to earn Gold Gloves and All-Star appearances on an annual basis until 1993. During 1995 season, Smith had shoulder surgery and was out nearly three months. After tension with his new manager Tony La Russa developed in 1996, Smith retired at season's end, and his uniform number (#1) was subsequently retired by the Cardinals. Smith served as host of the television show This Week in Baseball from 1997 to 1999, and continues to be an entrepreneur in a variety of business ventures.


Early life

Smith was born in Mobile, Alabama, the second of Clovis and Marvella Smith's six children (five boys and one girl).[1] While the family lived in Mobile, his father worked as a sandblaster at Brookley Air Force Base.[2] When Smith was six his family moved to the Watts section of Los Angeles, California.[2] His father became a delivery truck driver for Safeway stores, while his mother became an aide at a nursing home.[3] His mother was an influential part of his life who stressed the importance of education and encouraged him to pursue his dreams.[4][5]

Smith played a variety of sports in his youth, but considered baseball to be his favorite.[6] He developed quick reflexes through various athletic and leisure activity, such as bouncing a ball off the concrete steps in front of his house, moving in closer to reduce reaction time with each throw.[7] When not at the local YMCA or playing sports, Smith sometimes went with friends to the neighborhood lumberyard, springboarding off inner tubes and doing flips into sawdust piles (a precursor to his famous backflips).[8] In 1965, at age ten, he endured the Watts Riots with his family, recalling that, "We had to sleep on the floor because of all the sniping and looting going on."[9]

While Smith was attending junior high school, his parents decided to divorce.[3] Continuing to pursue his interest in baseball, he would ride the bus for nearly an hour to reach Dodger Stadium, cheering for the Los Angeles Dodgers at about 25 games a year.[3] Upon becoming a student at Locke High School, Smith played on the basketball and baseball teams.[3] Smith was a teammate of future National Basketball Association player Marques Johnson on the basketball team, and a teammate of future fellow Hall-of-Fame player Eddie Murray on the baseball side.[10] After high school Smith attended Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in 1974 on a partial academic scholarship, and managed to walk-on to the baseball team.[11] In addition to his academic education, he learned to switch-hit from Cal Poly coach Berdy Harr.[12] When Cal Poly's starting shortstop broke his leg midway through the 1974 season, Smith subsequently took over the starting role.[5] Later named an All-American athlete, he established school records in career at bats (754) and career stolen bases (110) before graduating in 1977.[11][13]

Professional baseball career

San Diego Padres

Smith was playing semi-professional baseball in Clarinda, Iowa, in June 1976 when he was selected in the seventh round of the amateur entry draft by the Detroit Tigers.[14][15] The parties could not agree on a contract; Smith wanted a $10,000 ($38,581 today) signing bonus, while the Tigers offered $8,500 ($32,794 today).[14] Smith returned to Cal Poly for his senior year, then in the 1977 draft was selected in the fourth round by the San Diego Padres, ultimately agreeing to a contract that included a $5,000 signing bonus ($18,121 today).[14] Smith spent his first year of professional baseball, 1977, with the Class A Walla Walla Padres of the Northwest League.[16]

Smith began 1978 as a non-roster invitee to the San Diego Padres' spring training camp in Yuma, Arizona. Smith credited Padres manager Alvin Dark for giving him confidence by telling reporters the shortstop job was Smith's until he proved he can't handle it.[17] Even though Dark was fired in the middle of training camp, Smith made his Major League Baseball (MLB) debut on April 7, 1978.[18][19]

"As I was in the air, the ball took a bad hop and caromed behind me, but I was able to catch it with my bare hand. I hit the ground, bounced back up, and threw Burroughs out at first."

—Ozzie Smith describes a fielding play he made in 1978[20]

It did not take long for Smith to earn recognition in the major leagues, making what some consider his greatest fielding play only ten games into his rookie season.[5][21] The Padres played host to the Atlanta Braves on April 20, 1978, and with two out in the top of the fourth inning, Atlanta's Jeff Burroughs hit a ground ball up the middle.[22] Smith described the play by saying, "He hit a ball back up the middle that everybody thought was going into center field. I instinctively broke to my left and dove behind second. As I was in the air, the ball took a bad hop and caromed behind me, but I was able to catch it with my bare hand. I hit the ground, bounced back up, and threw Burroughs out at first."[20]

During a roadtrip to Houston, later in the season, Smith met a part-time usherette at the Astrodome named Denise while making his way to the team bus outside the stadium.[23] The couple developed a relationship that was sometimes long-distance in nature, and eventually decided to marry.[23][24] It was also during the 1978 season that Smith introduced a signature move. Padres promotion director Andy Strasberg knew Smith could perform backflips, but that he only did them during practice before fans entered the stadium.[21] Strasberg asked Smith to do a backflip for fans during Fan Appreciation Day on October 1, the Padres' last home game of the season.[21][25] After conferring with veteran teammate Gene Tenace, Smith went ahead with the backflip, and it proved to be wildly popular.[21] Smith finished the 1978 season with a .258 batting average and .970 fielding percentage, placing second in National League Rookie of the Year voting to Bob Horner.[26][27]

After working with a hitting instructor during the offseason, Smith failed to record a base hit in his first 32 at bats of the 1979 season.[28] Among players with enough at-bats to qualify for the 1979 National League Triple Crown, Smith finished the season last in batting average (.211), home runs (0), and RBI (27).[29] Off the field, conflict developed between Padres' ownership and the combination of Smith and his agent, Ed Gottlieb. The parties entered into a contract dispute before the 1980 season, and when negotiations lasted into spring training, the Padres renewed Smith's contract at his 1979 salary of $72,500[30] Angered by the Padres' attitude during those contract talks, Gottlieb took out a help-wanted ad in the San Diego Union, part of which read, "Padre baseball player wants part-time employment to supplement income."[31] When Joan Kroc, wife of Padres owner Ray Kroc, publicly offered Smith a job as an assistant gardener on her estate, Smith and Gottlieb's relationship with the organization deteriorated further.[32]

Meanwhile, Smith was winning recognition for his accomplishments on the field. In 1980, he set the single-season record for most assists by a shortstop (621), and began his string of 13 consecutive Gold Glove awards.[33] Smith's fielding play prompted the Yuma Daily Sun to use the nickname "The Wizard of Oz" in a March 1981 feature article about Smith.[34] While "The Wizard of Oz" nickname was an allusion to the 1939 motion picture of the same name, Smith also came to be known as simply "The Wizard" during his playing career, as Smith's Baseball Hall of Fame plaque would later attest.[35][36] In 1981, Smith made his first All-Star Game appearance as a reserve player.[37]


While Smith was having problems with the Padres' owners, the St. Louis Cardinals also found themselves unhappy with their shortstop. During a game at Busch Stadium on August 26, 1981, Garry Templeton made obscene gestures at fans before being pulled off the field by manager Whitey Herzog.[38][39] Given the task of overhauling the Cardinals by owner Gussie Busch, Herzog was looking to trade Templeton when he was approached by Padres General Manager Jack McKeon at the 1981 baseball winter meetings.[40] While McKeon had previously told Herzog that Smith was untouchable in any trade, the Padres were now so angry at Smith's agent Gottlieb that McKeon was willing to deal.[41]

McKeon and Herzog agreed in principle to a six-player trade, with Templeton for Smith as the centerpiece.[41] It was then that Padres manager Dick Williams informed Herzog that a no-trade clause had been included in Smith's 1981 contract.[42] Upon learning of the trade, Smith's initial reaction was to invoke the clause and stay in San Diego, but he was still interested to hear what the Cardinals had to say.[43] While the deal for the players beside Templeton and Smith went through, Herzog flew to San Diego to meet with Smith and Gottlieb over the Christmas holiday.[44] Smith later recalled that, "Whitey told me that with me playing shortstop for the St. Louis Cardinals, we could win the pennant. He made me feel wanted, which was a feeling I was quickly losing from the Padres. The mere fact that Whitey would come all the way out there to talk to us was more than enough to convince me that St. Louis was the place I wanted to be."[45]

St. Louis Cardinals


A bronze statue in the likeness of Ozzie Smith, depicting him fielding a baseball
Part of Smith's statue outside Busch Stadiumin St. Louis.

After more behind-the-scenes contract wrangling, Smith became a St. Louis Cardinal on February 11, 1982.[46] Herzog believed Smith could improve his offensive production by hitting more ground balls, and subsequently created a motivational tool designed to help Smith concentrate on that task.[47] Approaching Smith one day during spring training, Herzog said, "Every time you hit a fly ball, you owe me a buck. Every time you hit a ground ball, I owe you a buck. We'll keep that going all year."[48] Smith agreed to the wager, and by the end of the season had won close to $300 from Herzog.[48] As the 1982 season got underway, Herzog's newly assembled team won 12 games in a row during the month of April, and finished the season atop the National League East division.[49][50] Herzog would later say of Smith's contributions that, "If he saved two runs a game on defense, which he did many a night, it seemed to me that was just as valuable to the team as a player who drove in two runs a game on offense."[51]

Smith became a father for the first time during the 1982 season with the birth of his son O.J., today known as Nikko, on April 28.[52] Smith also developed a lasting friendship with teammate Willie McGee during the season, and Smith said he likes to think he "helped Willie get over some of the rough spots of adjusting to the major leagues".[53] Smith later participated in the postseason for the first time when the Cardinals faced the Atlanta Braves in the best-of-five 1982 National League Championship Series (NLCS). Smith drove in the series' first run by hitting a sacrifice fly that scored McGee in Game 1, ultimately going five for nine in St. Louis' three-game series sweep.[54]

Just as Herzog had predicted when he told Smith the Cardinals would win the pennant with him on the team, Smith found himself as the team's starting shortstop in the best-of-seven 1982 World Series against the Milwaukee Brewers. During the contest Smith scored three runs, had five hits, and did not commit an error in the field.[55] When St. Louis was trailing 3–1 with one out in the sixth inning of Game 7, Smith started a rally with a base hit to left field, eventually scoring the first of the team's three runs that inning.[56] The Cardinals scored two more runs in the 8th inning for a 6-3 win and the championship.

After the World Series championship, Smith and the Cardinals agreed on a new contract in January 1983 that paid Smith $1 million per year.[57] Smith was voted in as the National League's starting shortstop in the All-Star Game for the first time in 1983, and at season's end won a fourth consecutive Gold Glove Award.[58] During July of the 1984 season, Smith went on the disabled list with a broken wrist after being hit by a pitch during a game against the Padres.[59][60] Smith's return to the lineup a month later was not enough to propel the Cardinals to a postseason berth.[59]


"Smith corks one into right, down the line! It may go . . . Go crazy, folks, go crazy! It's a home run, and the Cardinals have won the game, by the score of 3 to 2, on a home run by the Wizard! Go crazy!"

"And that's driven to deep right field, back goes Marshall...gone!

In 1985, Smith amassed a .276 batting average, 31 stolen bases, and 591 assists in the field.[15] The Cardinals as a team won 101 games during the season and earned another postseason berth.[62] Facing the Los Angeles Dodgers in the now best-of-seven NLCS, a split of the first four games set the stage for Game 5 at Busch Stadium. With the score tied at two runs apiece in the bottom of the ninth inning, Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda called upon closer Tom Niedenfuer to pitch. Smith batted left-handed against Niedenfuer with one out. Smith, who had never hit a home run in his previous 3,009 left-handed major league at-bats,[63] pulled an inside fastball down the right-field line for a home run, ending Game 5 in a 3–2 Cardinals victory.[64] Smith said, "I was trying to get an extra-base hit and get into scoring position. Fortunately, I was able to get the ball up."[16] The home run not only prompted broadcaster Jack Buck's "Go crazy folks" play-by-play call, but was also later voted the greatest moment in Busch Stadium history by Cardinals fans.[65][66]

After Smith's teammate Jack Clark hit a late-inning home run of his own in Game 6 to defeat the Dodgers, the Cardinals moved on to face the Kansas City Royals in the 1985 World Series. Once again sportswriters were quick to draw attention to Smith's outstanding defensive play instead of his 2 for 23 effort at the plate.[67][68] After the Cardinals took a three-games-to-two advantage, a controversial Game 6 call by umpire Don Denkinger overshadowed the remainder of the Series (which the Royals won in seven games).[69]

What was not publicly known during the regular season and playoffs was that Smith had torn his rotator cuff after suffering an impingement in his right shoulder during the July 11–14 homestand against the Padres.[70][71] After suffering the impingement diving back into first base on a pickoff throw, Smith altered his throwing motion to such a degree that the rotator cuff tear subsequently developed.[70] The 5'10" (1.78 m), 180-pound (82 kg) Smith opted to forgo surgery and instead built up his arm strength via weightlifting, playing through whatever pain he encountered.[63] Said Smith, "I didn't tell anybody about the injury, because I wanted to keep playing and didn't want anybody thinking they could run on me or take advantage of the injury. I tried to do almost everything, except throw a baseball, left-handed: opening a door, turning on the radio—everything. It didn't get any better, but it was good enough that I didn't have to have surgery."[72]

Because of his injury, Smith let his now four-year-old son Nikko perform his traditional Opening Day backflip before the Cardinals' first home game of the 1986 season.[73] Smith made an "eye-popping" play later that season on August 5, during a game against the Philadelphia Phillies at Busch Stadium.[63] In the top of the ninth inning, Phillies first baseman Von Hayes hit a short fly ball to left field, which was pursued by both Smith and left fielder Curt Ford.[74] Running with his back to home plate, Smith dove forward, simultaneously catching the ball while parallel to the ground and flying over the diving Ford, avoiding a collision by inches.[63][4]


"The thing about Ozzie is, if he misses a ball, you assume it's uncatchable. If any other shortstop misses a ball, your first thought is, 'Would Ozzie have had it?'"

 —Former New York Mets shortstop Bud Harrelson in 1987[5]

After hitting in either the second or eighth spot in the batting order for most of his time in St. Louis, Herzog made Smith the number-two hitter full-time during the 1987 season.[75] Over the course of the year, Smith accrued a .303 batting average, 43 stolen bases, 75 RBIs, 104 runs scored, and 40 doubles, good enough to earn him the Silver Slugger Award at shortstop.[26] In addition to winning the Gold Glove Award at shortstop for the eighth consecutive time, Smith posted a career-high on-base percentage of .392. Smith was also the leading vote-getter in the 1987 All-Star Game.[76] The Cardinals earned a postseason berth with 95 wins, and subsequently faced the San Francisco Giants in the 1987 National League Championship Series.[77] Smith contributed a triple during the series, and the Cardinals won the contest in seven games.[78]

The 1987 World Series matched the Cardinals against the American League champion Minnesota Twins. The home team won every game of the contest, as Minnesota won the series.[79] In 28 at bats during the Series, Smith scored three runs and had two RBIs.[68] Smith finished second in MVP balloting to Andre Dawson, who had played on the last-place Chicago Cubs, largely because Smith and teammate Jack Clark split the first-place vote.[80] Following the 1987 season, Smith was awarded the largest contract in the National League at $2,340,000.[81]

While the team did not see the postseason for the remainder of the decade, Smith continued to rack up All-Star appearances and Gold Gloves. Combined with the attention he received from his contract, Smith continued to be a national figure. Known as a savvy dresser, he made the April 1988 cover of GQ magazine.[82] Smith was witness to change within the Cardinal organization when owner Gussie Busch died in 1989 and Herzog quit as manager during the 1990 season.[83][84]


"No one paid attention to my offense. So having 2,000 hits is one of the things that is an accomplishment."

—Ozzie Smith, from the 1993 St. Louis Cardinals Yearbook[12]
Smith (far right) in "Homer at the Bat"

Joe Torre became Smith's new manager in 1990, but the team did not reach the postseason during Torre's nearly five-year tenure.[85] While the Cardinals celebrated their 100th anniversary in 1992, Smith marked milestones of his own, stealing his 500th career base on April 26, then notching a triple on May 26 in front of the home crowd for his 2,000th hit.[86] St. Louis had a one-game lead in the National League East division on June 1, 1992, but injuries took their toll on the team, including Smith's two week illness in late July after contracting chicken pox for the first time.[87] As a testament to his national visibility during this time, Smith appeared in a 1992 episode of The Simpsons titled "Homer at the Bat".[88] Smith became a free agent for the first time in his career on November 2, 1992, only to sign a new contract with the Cardinals on December 6.[15]

Smith won his final Gold Glove in 1992, and his 13 consecutive Gold Gloves at shortstop in the National League has yet to be matched.[89] The 1993 season marked the only time between 1981 and 1996 that Smith failed to make the All-Star team, and Smith finished the 1993 season with a .288 batting average and .974 fielding percentage.[26] He appeared in 98 games during the strike-shortened 1994 season, and later missed nearly three months of the 1995 season after shoulder surgery on May 31.[90][91] Smith was recognized for his community service efforts with the 1994 Branch Rickey Award and the 1995 Roberto Clemente Award. In February 1994, Smith took on the role of honorary chairman and official spokesman for the Missouri Governor's Council on Physical Fitness and Health.[92]


As Smith entered the 1996 season, he finalized a divorce from his wife Denise during the first half of the year.[24][93] Meanwhile, manager Tony La Russa began his first season with the Cardinals in tandem with a new ownership group. After General Manager Walt Jocketty acquired shortstop Royce Clayton during the offseason, La Russa emphasized an open competition for the spot that would give the Cardinals the best chance to win.[94] When spring training concluded, Smith had amassed a .288 batting average and zero errors in the field, and Clayton batted .190 with eight errors.[24] Smith believed he had earned the position with his spring training performance, but La Russa disagreed, and awarded Clayton the majority of playing time in the platoon situation that developed, where Smith typically saw action every third game.[24][95] La Russa said, "I think it's fair to say he misunderstood how he compared to Royce in spring training...When I and the coaches evaluated the play in spring training—the whole game—Royce started very slowly offensively and you could see him start to get better. By what he was able to do defensively and on the bases, Royce deserved to play the majority of the games."[96]

Smith missed the first month of the season with a hamstring injury, and continued to harbor ill feelings toward La Russa that had developed after spring training ended.[24][97] In a closed-door meeting in mid-May, La Russa asked Smith if he would like to be traded.[24] Instead, Smith and his agent negotiated a compromise with Cardinals management, agreeing to a buyout of special provisions in his contract in conjunction with Smith announcing his retirement.[24] The agreement prompted a press conference at Busch Stadium on June 19, 1996, during which Smith announced he would retire from baseball at season's end.[98]

Ozzie Smith's number 1 was retired by the St. Louis Cardinals in 1996.

As Smith made his final tour of the National League, he was honored by many teams, and received a standing ovation at the 1996 All-Star Game in Philadelphia.[24] Between June 19 and September 1, Smith's batting average increased from .239 to .286.[99] On September 2 Smith tied a career high by scoring four runs, one of which was a home run, and another on a close play at home plate in the bottom of the 10th inning against division leader Houston.[100] The victory moved the Cardinals to within a half game of Houston in the National League Central Division, and the Cardinals went on to win the division by six games.[100][101] The Cardinals held a special ceremony at Busch Stadium on September 28, 1996, before a game against the Cincinnati Reds, honoring Smith by retiring his uniform number. Noted for his ritual backflip before Opening Days, All-Star Games, and postseason games, Smith chose this occasion to perform it for one of the last times.[21]

In the postseason, the Cardinals first faced the San Diego Padres in the 1996 National League Division Series. After sitting out Game 1, Smith got the start in Game 2 at Busch Stadium, helping his team go up two games in the series by notching a run, a hit and two walks at the plate, along with an assist and a putout in the field.[102] The Cardinals then swept the series by winning Game 3 in San Diego.

The Cardinals faced the Atlanta Braves in the 1996 National League Championship Series. Smith started Game 1 and subsequently registered three putouts and one assist in the field, but went hitless in four at-bats in the Cardinals' 4–2 loss.[103] The Cardinals then won Games 2, 3, and 4, contests in which Smith did not appear.[104][105][106] Upon receiving the start in Game 5, Smith nearly duplicated his Game 1 performance with four putouts, one assist, and zero hits in four at-bats as part of another Cardinals defeat.[107] The Cardinals also failed to win Game 6 or Game 7 in Atlanta, ending their season.[108] When the Cardinals were trailing by ten runs during Game 7 on October 17, Smith flied out to right field while pinch-hitting in the sixth inning, marking the end of his playing career.[109] Smith finished his career with distinctions ranging from the accumulation of more than 27.5 million votes in All-Star balloting, to holding the record for the most MLB at-bats without hitting a grand slam.[4][110]

Post-playing career

Upon retirement, Smith took over for Mel Allen as the host of the television series This Week in Baseball (TWIB) in 1997.[111] Smith also became color commentator for the local broadcast of Cardinals games on KPLR-TV from 1997 to 1999.[112] When his stint on This Week in Baseball concluded, Smith then moved on to do work for CNN-SI beginning in 1999.[113]

Baseball great is seen fielding a ground ball on a dirt infield
Smith fields a ground ball at Doubleday Fieldin 2002.

On January 8, 2002 Smith learned via a phone call he had been elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame on his first ballot by receiving 91.7% of the votes cast.[114][115] As it happened, the Olympic torch was passing through St. Louis on its way to Salt Lake City for the 2002 Winter Olympics, and Smith served as a torchbearer in a ceremony with St. Louis Rams' quarterback Kurt Warner that evening.[116] Smith was inducted into the Hall of Fame during ceremonies on July 28, 2002. During his speech, he compared his baseball experiences with the characters from the novel The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, after which his son Dustin presented his Hall of Fame plaque.[117] Days later on August 11, Smith was back at Busch Memorial Stadium for the unveiling of a statue in his likeness made by sculptor Harry Weber.[118] Weber chose to emphasize Smith's defensive skills by showing Smith stretched horizontal to the ground while fielding a baseball.[118] At the ceremony Weber told Smith, "You spent half of your career up in the air. That makes it difficult for a sculptor to do something with it."[118]

Smith has also been an entrepreneur in a variety of business ventures. Smith opened "Ozzie's" restaurant and sports bar in 1988, started a youth sports academy in 1990, became an investor in a grocery store chain in 1999, and partnered with David Slay to open a restaurant in the early 2000s.[119][120][121][122] Of those businesses the youth academy and restaurant remain in operation, with the restaurant having changed ownership and locations once.[123][124] Aside from appearing in numerous radio and television commercials in the St. Louis area since retiring from baseball, Smith authored a children's book in 2006 and launched his own brand of salad dressing in 2008.[125]

Smith is father to three children from his marriage to former wife Denise; sons Nikko, Dustin, and daughter Taryn.[73][118] Smith remains a visible figure around the St. Louis area, making appearances as varied as playing the role of the Wizard in the St. Louis Municipal Opera's summer 2001 production of The Wizard of Oz.[126] In 1999 he ranked number 87 on The Sporting News' list of the 100 Greatest Baseball Players, and finished third in voting at shortstop for the Major League Baseball All-Century Team.[127][128] Smith has also been honored with induction into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame and the St. Louis Walk of Fame, and received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from Cal Poly.[129][130][131] Smith cheered on his son Nikko as he cracked the top ten finalists of the 2005 edition of American Idol.[132][133]

Career MLB statistics


Statistic[26] 2,573 9,396 1,257 2,460 402 69 28 793 1,072 580 589 .262 .337 .328


Category G PO A E CH DP FP RF/9 Innings
Statistic[26] 2,511 4,249 8,375 281 12,624 1,590 .978 5.22 21,785.67

See also


  1. ^ Associated Press (2002-07-28). "'Wizard of Oz' on deck for enshrinement". Sports Illustrated.com. http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/baseball/news/2002/07/27/ozzie_hall_ap/. Retrieved 2008-03-19. 
  2. ^ a b Smith and Rains 1988: 6
  3. ^ a b c d Smith and Rains 1988: 9
  4. ^ a b c Eisenbath 1999: 284–285
  5. ^ a b c d Fimrite, Ron (1987-09-28). "No. 1 In His Field". Sports Illustrated.com. http://vault.sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1066503/4/index.htm. Retrieved 2009-01-03. 
  6. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 8
  7. ^ Smith and Rains 2002: 24
  8. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 7
  9. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 4
  10. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 9–10
  11. ^ a b "Ozzie Smith". Cal Poly Land. http://polyland.calpoly.edu/topics/recreation/studentsites/2004b/Ozzie%20Smith.htm. Retrieved 2008-04-26. 
  12. ^ a b Lang, Dave. "There is Only 1 Ozzie Smith." St. Louis Cardinals Official 1993 Yearbook. 1993. 17
  13. ^ "Ozzie Smith". California Polytechnic State University. http://www.gopoly.com/index.php?p=hall_of_fame&id=166. Retrieved 2009-01-04. 
  14. ^ a b c Hollander, Dave (2007-08-08). "Still, Nothing in Baseball Gets Past Ozzie". AOL. http://sports.aol.com/moresports/story/_a/still-nothing-in-baseball-gets-past/20070731123009990001. Retrieved 2007-10-31. 
  15. ^ a b c "Ozzie Smith". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/S/Psmito001.htm. Retrieved 2008-07-27. 
  16. ^ a b Hummel 2007: 57–61
  17. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 17
  18. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 18
  19. ^ "San Diego Padres 3, San Francisco Giants 2". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1978/B04070SFN1978.htm. Retrieved 2007-09-27. 
  20. ^ a b Smith and Rains 1988: 21
  21. ^ a b c d e Colston, Chris (2002-07-24). "Go Crazy for the Wizard". USA Today Baseball Weekly. http://www.usatoday.com/sports/bbw/2002-07-24/cover.htm. Retrieved 2008-05-04. 
  22. ^ "San Diego Padres 2, Atlanta Braves 0". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1978/B04200SDN1978.htm. Retrieved 2007-10-10. 
  23. ^ a b Smith and Rains 1988: 24–25
  24. ^ a b c d e f g h Geffner, Michael (1996-07-22). "Cardinal singe — shortstop Ozzie Smith". The Sporting News. http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1208/is_n30_v220/ai_18504134/pg_1. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  25. ^ "San Diego Padres 4, Los Angeles Dodgers 3". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1978/B10010SDN1978.htm. Retrieved 2008-06-30. 
  26. ^ a b c d e "Ozzie Smith Statistics". Baseball-Reference. Sports Reference, LLC. http://www.baseball-reference.com/s/smithoz01.shtml. Retrieved 2007-12-17. 
  27. ^ "Baseball Awards Voting for 1978". Baseball-Reference. Sports Reference, LLC. http://www.baseball-reference.com/awards/awards_1978.shtml#NLroy. Retrieved 2007-11-12. 
  28. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 28–31
  29. ^ Spatz 2007: 141
  30. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 34
  31. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 35
  32. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 35–36
  33. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 37
  34. ^ Smith and Rains 2002: 22
  35. ^ Smith and Rains 2002: 25
  36. ^ "National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum:Hall of Famer detail". National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, Inc.. Archived from the original on June 25, 2008. http://web.archive.org/web/20080625094109/http://www.baseballhalloffame.org/hofers/detail.jsp?playerId=122439. Retrieved 2008-11-21. 
  37. ^ "National League 5, American League 4". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1981/B08090ALS1981.htm. Retrieved 2008-11-21. 
  38. ^ O'Neill 2005: 108
  39. ^ Herzog and Horrigan 1987: 135–136
  40. ^ Herzog and Horrigan 1987: 119–120, 137
  41. ^ a b Herzog and Horrigan 1987: 137
  42. ^ Herzog and Pitts 1999: 92–93
  43. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 51
  44. ^ Herzog and Horrigan 1987: 138
  45. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 52
  46. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 57
  47. ^ Smith and Rains 2002: 28–29
  48. ^ a b Smith and Rains 1988: 61
  49. ^ "The 1982 St. Louis Cardinals Regular Season Game Log". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1982/VSLN01982.htm. Retrieved 2008-07-18. 
  50. ^ Leach 2008: 37
  51. ^ Smith and Rains 2002: 6
  52. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 65
  53. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 66
  54. ^ "St. Louis Cardinals 7, Atlanta Braves 0". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1982/B10070SLN1982.htm. Retrieved 2007-10-15. 
  55. ^ Rains 2003: 105
  56. ^ "St. Louis Cardinals 6, Milwaukee Brewers 2". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1982/B10200SLN1982.htm. Retrieved 2007-10-28. 
  57. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 81
  58. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 87
  59. ^ a b Smith and Rains 1988: 95
  60. ^ "St. Louis Cardinals 7, San Diego Padres 4". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1984/B07130SLN1984.htm. Retrieved 2008-10-30. 
  61. ^ a b Garner 2000: 98
  62. ^ "The 1985 St. Louis Cardinals". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1985/TSLN01985.htm. Retrieved 2008-11-08. 
  63. ^ a b c d St. Louis Cardinals 2005 Media Guide. Hadler Printing, 2005. C-26.
  64. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 130
  65. ^ Leach, Matthew (2005-09-30). "Ozzie's homer tops in Busch history". MLB.com. http://cardinals.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20050930&content_id=1231334&vkey=news_stl&fext=.jsp&c_id=stl. Retrieved 2008-01-02. 
  66. ^ Hoffman, Jared (2002-06-19). "Legendary voice passes away". MLB.com. http://www.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20020619&content_id=56675&vkey=news_mlb&fext=.jsp&c_id=null. Retrieved 2008-08-17. 
  67. ^ Schoor 1990: 362
  68. ^ a b Schoor 1990: 418
  69. ^ Nemec and Wisnia 2002: 433
  70. ^ a b Smith and Rains 1988: 121
  71. ^ "The 1985 St. Louis Cardinals Regular Season Game Log". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1985/VSLN01985.htm. Retrieved 2008-11-08. 
  72. ^ Smith and Rains 2002: 43
  73. ^ a b Rains and Reid 2002: 111
  74. ^ Hummel 2007: 85–87
  75. ^ Herzog and Pitts 1999: 95
  76. ^ Smith and Rains 1988: 160
  77. ^ "The 1987 St. Louis Cardinals". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1987/TSLN01987.htm. Retrieved 2008-11-12. 
  78. ^ Nemec and Wisnia 2002: 441
  79. ^ Schoor 1990: 370–371
  80. ^ "Baseball Award Voting for 1987". Baseball-Reference. Sports Reference, LLC. http://www.baseball-reference.com/awards/awards_1987.shtml. Retrieved 2007-12-04. 
  81. ^ "1988 National League Leader Boards". Baseball-Reference. Sports Reference, LLC. http://www.baseball-reference.com/leagues/NL_1988_t.shtml. Retrieved 2007-10-25. 
  82. ^ Boswell, Thomas. "The Wizardry of Ozzie Smith." GQ. April 1988.
  83. ^ Thomas Jr., Robert (September 30, 1989). "August A. Busch Jr. Dies at 90. Built Largest Brewing Company.". The New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/learning/general/onthisday/bday/0328.html. Retrieved 2008-03-21. 
  84. ^ Hummel 2007: 121–123
  85. ^ Rains 2003: 251–252
  86. ^ Rains 2003: 251
  87. ^ "History:Cardinals Timeline". St. Louis Cardinals. 2005-03-22. http://stlouis.cardinals.mlb.com/stl/history/timeline5.jsp. Retrieved 2007-11-21. 
  88. ^ "Ozzie Smith". The Internet Movie Database. http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0809493/. Retrieved 2008-04-30. 
  89. ^ "National League Gold Glove Award Winners". Baseball-Reference. Sports Reference, LLC. http://www.baseball-reference.com/awards/gold_glove_nl_alt.shtml. Retrieved 2008-07-10. 
  90. ^ "Smith Has Shoulder Surgery". The New York Times. 1995-06-01. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9B06EEDE1639F932A35755C0A963958260&n=Top/Reference/Times%20Topics/People/S/Smith,%20Ozzie. Retrieved 2007-11-15. [dead link]
  91. ^ "The 1995 STL N Regular Season Batting Log for Ozzie Smith". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1995/Ismito0010181995.htm. Retrieved 2009-02-05. 
  92. ^ "History:Governor's Council on Physical Fitness and Health". Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. http://www.fitness.mo.gov/History.html. Retrieved 2008-03-04. 
  93. ^ Rains and Reid 2002: 110
  94. ^ Rains 2009: 183–184
  95. ^ Rains 2009: 187
  96. ^ Rains 2009: 185–186
  97. ^ Rains 2009: 186–187
  98. ^ Rains 2003: 252
  99. ^ "The 1996 STL N Regular Season Batting Log for Ozzie Smith". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1996/Ismito0010191996.htm. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  100. ^ a b Hummel 2007: 129–135
  101. ^ "The 1996 Season". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1996/Y_1996.htm. Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  102. ^ "St. Louis Cardinals 5, San Diego Padres 4". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1996/B10030SLN1996.htm. Retrieved 2007-10-26. 
  103. ^ "Atlanta Braves 4, St. Louis Cardinals 2". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1996/B10090ATL1996.htm. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  104. ^ "St. Louis Cardinals 8, Atlanta Braves 3". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1996/B10100ATL1996.htm. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  105. ^ "St. Louis Cardinals 3, Atlanta Braves 2". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1996/B10120SLN1996.htm. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  106. ^ "St. Louis Cardinals 4, Atlanta Braves 3". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1996/B10130SLN1996.htm. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  107. ^ "Atlanta Braves 14, St. Louis Cardinals 0". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1996/B10140SLN1996.htm. Retrieved 2008-11-02. 
  108. ^ Willis, George (1996-10-18). "Not Even Close: Braves Bronx-Bound After Routing Cards". The New York Times. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9F0CE0DC1031F93BA25753C1A960958260&sec=&spon=&pagewanted=1. Retrieved 2008-04-30. 
  109. ^ "Atlanta Braves 15, St. Louis Cardinals 0". Retrosheet.org. http://www.retrosheet.org/boxesetc/1996/B10170ATL1996.htm. Retrieved 2007-09-25. 
  110. ^ Kurkjian, Tim (2006-08-17). "The grand slam ... unusual, yet fun". ESPN.com. http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/columns/story?columnist=kurkjian_tim&id=2551746. Retrieved 2007-11-25. 
  111. ^ "Ozzie Smith Gets Job in Television". NYTimes.com. 1997-01-15. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9B07EEDE1E38F936A25752C0A961958260. Retrieved 2008-03-19. [dead link]
  112. ^ Robinson, Tom. "Ozzie Puts Down Glove, Picks Up Mike." The Virginian-Pilot. May 22, 1997: C1. Retrieved on 2007-12-28.
  113. ^ Rains and Reid 2002: 109
  114. ^ Rains and Reid 2002: 107
  115. ^ Bodley, Hal (2002-01-09). "Ozzie Smith voted into Hall of Fame". USA Today. http://www.usatoday.com/sports/baseball/hallfame/2002-01-08-ozzie.htm. Retrieved 2008-03-19. 
  116. ^ Smith and Rains 2002: 18–19
  117. ^ Leach, Matthew (2002-07-28). "A Day of Celebration". MLB.com. http://www.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20020728&content_id=91588&vkey=news_mlb&fext=.jsp&c_id=null. Retrieved 2007-10-23. 
  118. ^ a b c d Associated Press (2002-08-11). "Cardinals Unveil Ozzie Smith Statue". Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. http://www2.jsonline.com/sports/brew/ap/aug02/ap-bbn-cardinals-s081102.asp. Retrieved 2008-03-18. 
  119. ^ "Ozzie's at Westport closing on Friday". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. 2009-10-12. http://www.stltoday.com/blogzone/off-the-menu/uncategorized/2009/10/ozzies-at-westport-closing-on-friday/. Retrieved 2009-11-07. [dead link]
  120. ^ Rains and Reid 2002: 113
  121. ^ "Ozzie Smith to invest in grocery chain". St. Louis Business Journal. 1999-07-14. http://stlouis.bizjournals.com/stlouis/stories/1999/07/12/daily7.html. Retrieved 2008-10-25. 
  122. ^ "Chesterfield Baseball Custom Technical Training". Ozzie Smith's Sports Academy. http://www.ozziesmithssportsacademy.com/chesterfield/baseball_custom_training.html. Retrieved 2009-02-01. 
  123. ^ "Ozzie Smith's Sports Academy". Ozzie Smith's Sports Academy. http://www.ozziesmithssportsacademy.com/. Retrieved 2009-02-01. 
  124. ^ Brown, Lisa R. (2009-12-25). "Gallardo building Ozzie's Sports Bar downtown". St. Louis Business Journal. http://stlouis.bizjournals.com/stlouis/stories/2009/12/28/story6.html. Retrieved 2010-01-06. 
  125. ^ "Hello Fredbird!". Amazon.com. http://www.amazon.com/dp/1932888837. Retrieved 2011-01-07. 
  126. ^ Rains and Reid 2002: 114
  127. ^ Smith 1998: 189
  128. ^ Associated Press (1999-10-23). "All-Century Team final voting". ESPN.com. http://static.espn.go.com/mlb/news/1999/1023/129008.html. Retrieved 2008-01-01. 
  129. ^ "Ozzie "The Wizard of Oz" Smith". Alabama Sports Hall of Fame. http://www.ashof.org/index.php?src=directory&srctype=display&id=273&submenu=Inductees&view=company_detail. Retrieved 2009-01-09. 
  130. ^ "Ozzie Smith". St Louis Walk of Fame. http://www.stlouiswalkoffame.org/inductees/ozzie-smith.html. Retrieved 2007-12-19. 
  131. ^ "Baseball Great Ozzie Smith To Be Cal Poly's Honored Commencement Speaker". CSU Newsline. 2003-05-09. http://www.calstate.edu/Newsline/Archive/02-03/030509-SLO.shtml. Retrieved 2007-12-28. 
  132. ^ Stambaugh, Phil (2006-09-12). "Say What? with Ozzie Smith". PGATOUR.com. http://www.worldgolfchampionships.com/story/9614089/. Retrieved 2008-06-05. 
  133. ^ Wald, Jaina. "When it's "Idol" time at Ozzie's, folks go crazy for Nikko." St. Louis Post-Dispatch. 2005-04-06. E3. Retrieved on 2008-03-19.
  • Eisenbath, Mike (1999). The Cardinals Encyclopedia. Temple University Press. ISBN 1566397030. OCLC 40193767. 
  • Garner, Joe (2000). And The Fans Roared. Naperville: Sourcebooks. ISBN 1-57071-582-3. OCLC 44509368. 
  • Herzog, Whitey; Kevin Horrigan (1987). White Rat — A Life in Baseball. New York: Harper & Row. ISBN 0-06-080910-8. OCLC 14132084. 
  • Herzog, Whitey; Jonathan Pitts (1999). You're Missin' a Great Game. New York: Simon & Schuster. ISBN 0-684-85314-0. OCLC 40550886. 
  • Hummel, Rick (2007). Commish & the Cardinals. St. Louis Post-Dispatch Books. ISBN 978-0-9661397-9-2. 
  • Leach, Matthew (2008). Game of my Life — St. Louis Cardinals. Champaign: Sports Publishing L.L.C.. ISBN 978-1-59670-273-8. 
  • Nemec, David; Saul Wisnia (2002). 100 Years of Baseball. Publications International, Ltd.. ISBN 0-7853-7567-8. OCLC 51621011. 
  • O'Neill, Dan; Joe Buck, Robert W. Duffy, Bernie Miklasz (2005). Mike Smith. ed. Busch Stadium Moments. St. Louis Post-Dispatch. ISBN 978-0-9661397-3-0. OCLC 62385897. 
  • Rains, Rob; Alvin Reid (2002). Whitey's Boys: A Celebration of the '82 Cards World Championship. Chicago: Triumph. ISBN 1-57243-485-6. OCLC 49942657. 
  • Rains, Rob (2003). Cardinal Nation (2nd ed.). St. Louis: The Sporting News. ISBN 0-89204-727-5. OCLC 52577755. 
  • Rains, Rob (2009). Tony La Russa — Man on a Mission. Chicago: Triumph. ISBN 978-1-60078-169-8. OCLC 244420814. 
  • Schoor, Gene (1990). The History of the World Series. New York: William Morrow and Company. ISBN 0-688-07995-4. OCLC 21303516. 
  • Smith, Ron (1998). The Sporting News Selects Baseball's 100 Greatest Players. St. Louis: The Sporting News. ISBN 9780892046089. OCLC 40392319. 
  • Smith, Ozzie; Rob Rains (1988). Wizard. Chicago: Contemporary Books. ISBN 0-8092-4594-9. OCLC 17649043. 
  • Smith, Ozzie; Rob Rains (2002). Ozzie Smith — The Road to Cooperstown. Sports Publishing L.L.C.. ISBN 1-58261-576-4. OCLC 50326570. 
  • Smith, Ozzie (2006). Hello, Fredbird!. Mascot Books. ISBN 1932888837. 
  • Spatz, Lyle, ed (2007). The SABR Baseball List and Record Book: Baseball's Most Fascinating Records and Unusual Statistics. Society for American Baseball Research. ISBN 978-1416532453. OCLC 86072285. 

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ozzie Smith — Parador en corto Batea: Ambos lados Lanza: Derecha  …   Wikipedia Español

  • Ozzie Smith — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Smith. Ozzie Smith …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Ozzie — or Ozzy may refer to: People: Chris Osgood, National Hockey League goaltender for the Detroit Red Wings Ray Ozzie, Chief Software Architect at Microsoft Ozzie Guillén, baseball player and the new named manager of the Miami Marlins Ozzie Nelson,… …   Wikipedia

  • Smith (Familienname) — Smith [smɪθ] (englisch smith „Schmied“) ist ein englischsprachiger Familienname. Zur Herkunft siehe Schmidt. Smith ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Bekannte Namensträger Inhaltsverzeichnis A B C D E F G H I J K L M N …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Smith — Cette page d’homonymie répertorie les différents sujets et articles partageant un même nom.  Pour l’article homophone, voir Smyth. Sommaire …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Ozzie Chavez — Infobox MLB player width = 150 name =Ozzie Chavez team =Milwaukee Brewers number = position =Infielder birthdate= birth date and age|1983|7|13 bats =Switch throws =Right debutdate = debutyear = debutteam = statyear = stat1label = stat1value =… …   Wikipedia

  • Ozzie Newsome — No. 82      Tight end Personal information Date of birth: March 16, 1956 (1956 03 16) (age 55) Muscle Shoals, Alabama …   Wikipedia

  • Ozzie of the Mounted — est un court métrage de la série Oswald le lapin chanceux, produit par les studios Disney et sorti le 30 avril 1928. Sommaire 1 Synopsis 2 Fiche technique 3 Commentaires …   Wikipédia en Français

  • People with the surname Smith — Smith is one of the most widely distributed surnames in the English speaking world. Following is a list of notable people with the surname Smith:People known primarily as having the surname Smith Common combinations of given name and surname… …   Wikipedia

  • Earl Smith — can refer to:In sports: *Earl Smith (MLB outfielder), MLB outfielder, 1916–1922 *Earl Smith (MLB catcher), MLB catcher, 1919–1930 *Earl Smith (NL outfielder), NL outfielder who played in the 1955 season *Earl (J.R.) Smith III, known as J.R. Smith …   Wikipedia