In St. Louis, shortstop Garry Templeton -- you remember his threat last spring to do less than his best in the field -- is a contented man, for the nonce. He backed off from threatened arbitration and had agreed to terms of a one-year contract (guesstimate: $300,000) with the Cards, leaving the path open to a multiyear agreement to mature there in Gateway city.

Evidently the glow of being the first big leaguer to get 100 hits batting left-handed and 100 right-handed in a season outweighs any bitterness Templeton might feel at Manager Ken Boyer's postseason assessment. Boyer said error-prone Templeton cut down on his errors some but not enough -- "is two or three years away from having the knowledge and experience to go with his natural talent" -- and added that co-MVP Keith Hernandez at first base saved the shortstop from at least 30 additional miscues. . .

Eddie Stanky, the old Card-Giant-Dodger, etc., who coaches baseball at U. of S. Alabama in Mobile, goes in for open heart surgery in Birmingham today, saying: "I've never felt more confident of a situation in my life. To my mind, the surgeons who'll be doing my job are like having a winning run on third base, one out in the ninth and having Hank Aaron, Stan Musial or Ted Williams at bat." The "Brat" at 64 added, "I intend to coach until state laws force me out at 70" . . .