5. Ken Reitz
If Ken Oberkfell and Terry Pendleton are forgotten stars of the 80s, then Ken Reitz is one of the forgotten stars of the 70s. Nevertheless, Reitz was a good third baseman and for seven years, a staple in the St. Louis Cardinals’ lineup.
His strength was his steady defense, which earned him a Gold Glove in 1975, and an All-Star appearance in 1980. For five years, Reitz led the National League in Fielding Percentage at third base, and in 1978, he led the National League in double plays turned for a third baseman.
Additionally, for five years, he was in the top five of National League third baseman in putouts and assists. NIcknamed the “Zamboni” for his ability to scoop up ground balls on Busch Stadium’s artificial surface, Reitz set a National League record by committing only nine errors in 1977. He followed that up by breaking his own record in 1980 by committing only eight.
Offensively, Ken Reitz’s right-handed bat could be considered a steady presence in the Cardinals batting order by hitting a slash line of .263/.292/.369 while in St. Louis. His best year was in 1977 when he slugged 17 homers with 79 RBI.
Ken Reitz bridged two eras in Cardinal baseball, replacing Joe Torre at third base in 1973, and was replaced by Ken Oberkfell in 1981.