The St. Louis Cardinals are a professional baseball franchise in St. Louis, Missouri who play in the National League (NL) of Major League Baseball (MLB). The new Busch Stadium has been their home park since 2006.
St. Louis were charter members of the American Association (AA) in 1882. They joined the NL in 1892. One of the most successful franchises in baseball history, the Cardinals have won 11 World Series championships, second only to the New York Yankees' 27, 19 National League pennants, and 12 division titles.
St. Louis dominated the AA with four league championships, winning the 1886 World Series and tying the 1885 World Series against the NL. Other notable achievements include Branch Rickey's pioneering of the farm system, Rogers Hornsby's two Triple Crowns, Joe Medwick's one Triple Crown, Dizzy Dean's 30-win season, Stan Musial's 17 Major League and 29 NL records, Bob Gibson's 1.12 ERA season, Whitey Herzog's Whiteyball, Mark McGwire breaking the single-season home run record, and the 2011 championship team's unprecedented comebacks. The Cardinals have won 105 or more games in four different seasons and won 100 or more a total of eight times. Cardinals players have won 20 league MVPs, four batting Triple Crowns, and three Cy Young Awards. Baseball Hall of Fame inductees include Lou Brock, Dizzy Dean, Gibson, Herzog, Hornsby, Joe Medwick, Stan Musial, Rickey, Red Schoendienst, Ozzie Smith, Bruce Sutter, and Tony La Russa. Their rivalry with the Chicago Cubs is one of the most storied in professional sports.
An investment group headed by William DeWitt, Jr. has owned the Cardinals since 1995. John Mozeliak is the general manager and Mike Matheny the manager. Renowned for strong support from fans, despite being in one of the sport's mid-level markets, the Cardinals routinely see attendances among the league's highest, and are consistently among the top three in MLB in local television ratings. In 2014, Forbes valued the Cardinals at $820 million, making them the eighth-most valuable franchise in MLB.
Busch Stadium (also referred to informally as "New Busch Stadium" or "Busch Stadium III") is the home of the St. Louis Cardinals, of MLB. The stadium has a seating capacity of 43,975, and contains 3,706 club seats and 61 luxury suites. It replaced Busch Memorial Stadium and occupies a portion of that stadium's former footprint. A commercial area, dubbed Ballpark Village, was built adjacent to the stadium over the remainder of the former stadium's footprint.
The ballpark opened on April 4, 2006 with an exhibition between the minor league Memphis Redbirds and Springfield Cardinals, both affiliates of the St. Louis Cardinals, which Springfield won 5-3 with right-hander Mike Parisi recording the first win. The first official major league game occurred on April 10, 2006 as the Cardinals defeated the Milwaukee Brewers 6–4 behind an Albert Pujols home run and winning pitcher Mark Mulder.
The highest attendance for a sports event was on May 23, 2013 when 48,263 people watched Chelsea Football Club and Manchester City Football Club play a friendly match.
The stadium is the third stadium in St. Louis to carry the name Busch Stadium. Sportsman's Park was renamed Busch Stadium in 1953, after team owner Gussie Busch. The first Busch closed in 1966, and both the baseball Cardinals, and the NFL's St. Louis Cardinals moved to a new multi-purpose stadium, named Busch Memorial Stadium. However, the current stadium is actually a corporate name and named after Anheuser-Busch, not Gussie Busch. The naming rights deal was signed in 2004 and would extend from the stadium's opening in 2006 until 2026.