No. 32 hasn’t been worn by a St. Louis Cardinals player since Josh Hancock‘s death in 2007. The number hasn’t officially been retired, though, and it has now been issued.
According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Rob Johnson, a catcher signed to give the organization some minor league depth, has been given No. 32. Hancock, the last player to sport the number, was killed in 2007 when the vehicle he was driving while intoxicated struck the rear of a flat bed tow truck.
Johnson was told of the number’s previous owner before selecting it, and the selection was done with the approval of the Cardinals’ front office. The number has been out of circulation since Hancock’s death, and a black medallion with the number in white continues to appear in a few places throughout Busch Stadium.
The number reportedly has been available to players to use in recent years, but no one has opted to use it until now. The Cardinals are said to be experiencing a bit of a numbers crunch for spring training.
Thumbnail photo via Wikipedia/Josh Hancock