While he was in St. Louis, Oliver was used as a starting pitcher and managed a 13-13 record in just about a year and a half with the Cardinals. He had an ERA of 4.26 with the team during both the 1998 and 1999 seasons, and he managed almost 200 innings during his lone full season with the team. Oliver managed to redefine himself as a relief pitcher the second half of his career, he is left handed, and ended up pitching for twenty years in the Majors.
His final season was spent with the Blue Jays in 2013 at 42 years old.
While he was with the Cardinals, again it was not a really long time, Oliver managed to appear on a very limited number of baseball cards. Not quite sure how that happened since the late 1990s baseball card scene was bloated with all sorts of different manufacturers who cranked out endless products.
Two of the Darren Oliver cards are team issued. One was a stadium giveaway in 1999, which I do not have, but he also appeared in a McDonald's set. The cards were sold at the different Mickey D's restaurants around metro St. Louis.
They were really just a knock off of the 1999 Upper Deck MVP set. In fact, the front of the card appears as an Upper Deck card. The back of card is the only place where the McDonald's logo appears......
Bottom right corner. There are not many cards in this set, but this has to be the most under the radar corporate sponsorship for a baseball card set ever. As a Cardinals fan, it was actually a nice little product since it featured a few different players who did not appear on cards often after joining the team. Oliver was one, Shawon Dunston was another.
Outside of the two team issued cards, Oliver only had two other mainstream baseball cards with the Cardinals. One was in the 1999 Stadium Club set, the other was in MLB Showdown. Not really into games, so I have a few of these sitting around, just not a substantial number. Mainly, I have the Cardinals cards since Ray Lankford was in the set.
Oliver and the Cardinals ran into each other a decade after he left St. Louis. The Cardinals played the Rangers in the 2011 World Series, Oliver was a relief pitcher for Texas. Most notable was his role in Game 6 of the Series, when after a Josh Hamilton home run put the Rangers up in the 10th inning, Oliver allowed two runners on to start the inning. Both runs would end up scoring on a Lance Berkman single after Oliver was pulled from the game.
A few days before, Oliver had also played a part in the Albert Pujols three home run game in Game 4 of the Series. He gave up the third and final home run....
It appears that Darren Oliver's biggest role in the history of the Cardinals was giving up a bunch of runs in the World Series years after leaving the team. He made 40 starts for the Cardinals, which were average at best, but he still help the team win a World Series.