The Springfield Cardinals announced Wednesday, in a "Trophy Side Chat" with Manager Mike Shildt, the artist renderings of the spectacular 2012 Texas League Championship Rings. They are comprised of 69 diamonds, a ruby on top and several engravings that commemorate the Texas League title. In all, 70 gems were used to manufacture the ring to signify the over 70 years since the last professional baseball title in Springfield.
It is the first Minor League Championship ring of this size made with diamonds that go around the entirety of the face and includes engravings, with logos of the opposing teams, of each series won against by Springfield during their title run and Minor League Team of the Year.
In unveiling the drawings in the indoor training facility, Springfield general manager Matt Gifford said several inscriptions on the underside of the rings, including "Stay Hungry and Have Faith."
That was added at Shildt's request.
"We put that into the last two rings we've had," Shildt said, referring to the championship rings touting his 2010 and 2011 Rookie-level Appalachian League pennants with Johnson City. "If you've had success and have done something, human nature is to be satisfied.
"One thing I've tried to impart on our guys, 'When you play, you've got to play with a hunger. And when you have success, you have to actually get hungrier.' … That's what it's about in St. Louis."
The rings include the team's overall record of 83-64, adding its six playoff victories to the total. One side includes the "StL" logo, the entry to Hammons Field and a home plate for the player's jersey number. On the opposite side, a large 2012 signifying the year of the title, the Texas League Championship Trophy, the Springfield Cardinals "Birds on the Bat" logo, the total record and the inscription "1st League Title".
Six diamonds rest on opposite sides atop the ring, half to represent the three playoff wins against Tulsa in the division series, the other half to represent the pennant series victories against Frisco.
Players will receive their rings March 28 in Jupiter, Fla., in a ceremony before the St. Louis Cardinals' exhibition game against Miami.
Bill Dewitt III, the St. Louis Cardinals president, along with Gifford, Shildt and other front-office members in Springfield had input into the rings.
To honor the best fans in baseball and to thank them for their support to enroute to this first title, all Season Ticket Holders for the 2013 season will receive a replica of the Championship Ring for each seat in their respective plan. To become a Season Ticket Holder or if you have questions about becoming one, please call (417) 863-0395 to guarantee your Replica Championship Ring.
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This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.