July 24, 2021

Chicago Cubs history: Merritt Ranew and the 1964 Cubs (Bleed Cubbie Blue)


The Cubs’ winning season of 1963 turned out to be more of a blip than a turn of the tides, as they returned to their unfortunate losing ways in 1964.

1964 Cubs

Record: 76-86
Standing: 8th in the National League
Manager: Bob Kennedy

Likely the most memorable thing from then 1964 season was the ill-fated trade between the Cubs and the Cardinals, in which the Cubs traded (among others) outfielder Lou Brock to the Cards for pitcher Ernie Broglio. Broglio had a decent enough 1964 season, with a 4.04 ERA and an unfortunate losing record, but of course Brock went on to become a Hall of Famer with the Cardinals. If you have any older Cubs fans in your life (or are one) the sting of this trade is probably still lingering.

If we want to look at the positives of the year, Ernie Banks bounced back from a down season, and Ron Santo and Billy Williams both had averages over .300. There were definitely glimmers of positivity in an otherwise dour season.

For a 26-year-old catcher from Albany, Georgia, however, it wasn’t precisely a season for the memory books.

Merritt Ranew

Merritt Ranew, a catcher by trade, got his chance in the majors mainly owing to the 1962 expansion. He spent…

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