Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Program Targets Black Youngsters

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Program Targets Black Youngsters

Article excerpt

In the rough of East St. Louis, Ted Savage dreams of a diamond. Not the baseball kind.

Savage's gem, in this case, is Grand Marais Golf Course. The public course is situated in Frank Holten State Park on the east end of East St. Louis, a city known for its hostile streets, lively politics, jumpin' nightlife and strong sports tradition.

It's also the city where Theodore Edmund Savage grew up. A city whose notorious reputation is not totally deserved, he adds. It couldn't be all bad. It turned out Savage, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Miles Davis, Eugene Redmond, Donald McHenry, Jimmy Connors, Kellen Winslow . . .

Savage never has strayed far.

He played parts of nine seasons in the major leagues, including a stint with the Cardinals. His numbers hint of a player with a modest career: .233 lifetime batting average, a better outfielder than hitter.

After baseball, he came home. Raised a family. Earned a master's degree and a doctorate. Served as athletic director at Harris-Stowe State College. Then, in the aftermath of the controversy over Al Campanis' remarks about blacks lacking the necessities to be baseball executives, he seized upon an opportunity and was hired six years ago as the Cardinals' director of target marketing.

In a suit and tie, Savage can seem stern at times. Other times, such as when he's watching boys play baseball in the Reviving Baseball in the Inner Cities program or showing the improvements at the Grand Marais course, he can be cheery.

This week at Grand Marais, a smile actually stole across Savage's usually serious face.

Sitting at a picnic table under a white and yellow tent that day was former Cards manager Whitey Herzog, who was bewitching reporters with tales from baseball and the links. Herzog, an 18-handicapper, has lent his name and considerable clout to attract a star-studded list to the eighth annual Whitey Herzog Celebrity Golf Classic, an 18-hole scramble on Oct. 11.

Herzog's golf classic had been held for years at Quail Creek to raise money for the Jefferson County YMCA. The tournament now will move to Grand Marais to benefit its new youth golf program.

In January, Golf Management Enterprises signed a 25-year lease with the state of Illinois to reinvigorate the neglected golf course. …

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