Sunday, February 27, 2011

Duke Snider (1926-2011)

Brooklyn/LA Dodgers great Duke Snider, 84, has died.

Snider,one of the most iconic players to ever walk on a baseball field, died of natural causes in a hospital in Escondido, California. The Hall of Famer was an 8-time All-Star with a .295 AVG, 407 HR, 1333 RBI. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1980.

Perhaps Snider is best remembered for being a member of the famed "Boys of Summer" group who helped the Brooklyn Dodgers win their first-ever World Series in 1955 against the crosstown New York Yankees after losing to them in five previous tries (1941, 1947, 1949, 1952, 1953). However, the sweet victory would last for just one season as the boys from Brooklyn would go on to relinquish their World Series title to the rival Yankees (yet again) in 1956.

Snider would win another World Series title in 1959 with the now-Los Angeles Dodgers but his legendary status will always be synonymous with the connection the borough of Brooklyn had with it's beloved team who Brooklynites (still) refer to as "Dem Bums".

In Brooklyn, Snider played with legendary players like, Jackie Robinson, Pee Wee Reese, Roy Campanella and Gil Hodges in a mecca called Ebbets Field, located in the Flatbush area of Brooklyn. He was also part of what is perhaps the most famous trio of center fielders to ever simultaneously play in one city. A trio simply referred to as "Willie, Mickey and the Duke".

New York Greats - Mickey Mantle, Willie Mays and Duke Snider 

Snider once said, "I was born in Los Angeles. Baseballwise, I was born in Brooklyn. We lived with Brooklyn. We died with Brooklyn."

Farewell to the Duke of Flatbush.

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