Sunday, February 27, 2011
EDWIN DONALD (THE DUKE) SNIDER passed away Sunday at the age of 84.
Believe or not kids, there was a time way before Starbucks, the internet, and cell phones, when New York had 3, count-em, THREE baseball teams. And none of the players had agents.
Centerfield for Dem Bums, the Brooklyn Dodgers, was patrolled by "The Duke Of Flatbush": Duke Snider. Snider put up some amazing offensive numbers: He hit 40 or more home runs in five consecutive seasons (1953–57), and averaged 42 home runs, 124 RBIs, 123 runs and a .320 batting average between 1953-1956. Those stats today would get you, oh, about a hundred million a year for ten years or so.
Duke Snider. Hall of Famer and perhaps the best center fielder who is rarely mentioned anymore.
Another one of the Boys Of Summer takes his place back in Ebbets Field forever. The Duke hit the last home run ever hit at Ebbets Field. And his first day as a major leaguer? Another rookie was trying to make the team that day with him: Jackie Roosevelt Robinson. Quite a pair of rookies.