St. Louis Cardinals manager Mike Shildt, shown July 3, 2020, was entering the final season of a three-year contract extension that he signed after the 2019 season. File Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo
Oct. 14 (UPI) -- Despite producing a 17-game winning streak that pushed the St. Louis Cardinals into the MLB postseason, Mike Shildt was fired as the club's manager Thursday.
John Mozeliak, the Cardinals' president of baseball operations, told reporters that Shildt was dismissed because of "philosophical differences." Mozeliak, however, declined to reveal specifics, saying the move was a result of "something that popped up recently."
Mozeliak also noted that Shildt was entering the final season of his contract, but the executive said that wasn't the lone reason for parting ways with Shildt. Shildt signed a three-year extension with the Cardinals after the 2019 campaign.
"All I can say is where we felt the team was going, we were struggling to get on the same page," Mozeliak said. "With him having one year remaining on his contract, we could have gone into 2022 having that over him, and we just decided that internally it would be best to separate now and take a fresh look as we head into a new season."
Mozeliak didn't discuss any possible replacements for Shildt, but he said there were plenty of internal candidates. He said the coaches who remain under contract are expected to be back next year.
"As I said before, 2021 was a real success and something that, for all of us that were part of the organization, we take tremendous pride in," Mozeliak said. "Any time you go on a 17-game winning streak and actually create history for your organization, it's something you take enormous pride in.
"A lot of times these decisions aren't based just on the season. More to the point, it's directionally where we want to go."
The 53-year-old Shildt guided the Cardinals to the playoffs three times, including an appearance in the wild-card round this year. St. Louis lost to the Los Angeles Dodgers in that National League wild-card matchup on a walk-off home run.
Shildt posted a 252-199 record in three-plus seasons as the Cardinals' manager. He led the club to the NL Central crown in 2019, when he was named NL Manager of the Year.