St. Louis Cardinals – No. 77
September 6, 1961 |
Jackson, Mississippi, U.S.
James Christopher "Chris" Maloney (born September 6, 1961) is the first-base coach for the St. Louis Cardinals of Major League Baseball. A former minor league first baseman and outfielder, he spent the 2011 season as the skipper of the Memphis Redbirds of the Pacific Coast League, his fifth consecutive season as manager of the Cardinals' Triple-A farm club before his hiring, on November 16, 2011, to serve on the 2012 staff of Cardinals' manager Mike Matheny.
Early and personal life
Maloney was born on September 6, 1961, in Jackson, Mississippi. He graduated from St. Joseph High School in Jackson and from Mississippi State University. He was nicknamed "The Hammer" and "Wally Pipp" during his MSU playing days for his smooth stroke and for being the starting first baseman on State's 1983 squad before contracting a stomach virus early in that campaign. College Baseball Hall of Fame member and MLB All-Star Will Clark took over for the ailing Maloney at first and started every game from mid-1983 through the semifinals of the 1985 NCAA World Series for the Bulldogs.
His father, J. Con Maloney, was the longtime owner of the Jackson Mets and Jackson Generals of the Texas League, and a co-owner (with Nolan Ryan and family) of Round Rock Baseball, owners of the Round Rock Express.
Chris has a brother, Mark, who is a partner with the law firm King & Spalding.
Maloney signed with the New York Mets in 1983 and played four seasons of minor league baseball in the Mets and Cardinals organizations, never rising above the Class A level. In his finest season, 1984 with the Columbia Mets of the South Atlantic League, he batted .324 in 173 at bats with three home runs and 24 runs batted in. A switch-hitter who threw right-handed, Maloney stood 5'11" (1.8 m) and weighed 180 pounds (82 kg) during his playing career.
Maloney became a minor league manager in the Cardinals' system in 1991 with the Rookie-level Johnson City Cardinals of the Appalachian League. In 18 seasons (1991–96; 1998–2009) as a manager, his teams have won 1,191 games and lost 1,121 (.515) with two league championships — including the 2009 PCL playoff title. With the exception of three seasons (2002–04) as manager of the New Orleans Zephyrs, top farm club of the Houston Astros at the time, all of those years have been spent with the Cardinals' organization.
He was announced as taking the job as first-base coach for the St. Louis Cardinals on Nov. 16, 2011.
- Cards retain Duncan, McGwire, Oquendo: Aldrete takes over as bench coach, Maloney new first-base coach, MLB.com (Nov. 16, 2011)
- Montague, John, ed., New York Mets 1985 Organization Book. St. Petersburg, Fla.: The Baseball Library, 1985.