Lindy McDaniel – First “Save” Artist


McDaniel played for the Cardinals from 1955-1962 with his debut on September 2, 1955. He was one of the first pitcher to be used primarily in relief and not a starting pitcher. He was called upon to “finish” games.

In an interview after his playing days, Lindy McDaniel stated that 1960 was his best season when he was 12-2 (all in relief) with 22 saves and a 1.29 ERA leader and a trip to the All Star Game.

The Fireman-of-the-Year award began in 1960 for the top relief pither and he was the winner of it .

McDaniel won Fireman-of-the Year honors in 1960 and 1963. He also led the National League in relief pitching in 1959, but that was the year before the first Fireman-of-the-year award was presented. With nine saves and a 0.74 ERA, McDaniel was named the Player of the Month for June 1960.

McDaniel went on to become a preacher which was his first lifelong dream. Here is an article from the Chicago Tribune in 1988 about his ministry.

career Statistics
  • 984 Games Played
  • 141-119 Record
  • 3.45 ERA
  • 1361 Strikeouts
  • 72 Saves
  • 2-time All Star (1960,1962)

Official Lindy McDaniel Website

SABR article