Duke Snider - The Baseball Player

Edwin Donald Snider

Nicknames—The Silver Fox
 The Duke of Flatbush

Birth: September 19, 1926 Los Angeles, California
Death: February 27, 2011Valle Vista, California
Find A Grave

Inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, 1980. Played for the National League's Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers (1947-1962, New York Mets (1963) and San Francisco Giants (1964).

Was sold to the New York Mets just before the start of the 1963 season, where he was a huge sentimental favorite.

Wore number 11 initially when he joined the Mets, then switched back to his familiar number 4 when Charley Neal, who refused to give it up, was traded to Cincinnati.

Was sold to the San Francisco Giants on Opening Day of the 1964 season, where he wore number 28.

His favorite athlete as a kid was Jackie Robinson, who played for UCLA in Snider's hometown.

Holds the National League record for most home runs (11) and most RBIs (26) in World Series play. He is also the only player to have four homers in two World Series (1952 and 1955).

Team captain of the Dodgers in 1962.

The Sporting News Major League Player of the Year (1955).

Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers All-Time Homerun Leader (389).

Brooklyn/Los Angeles Dodgers All-Time RBI Leader (1,271).

Made his major debut on on April 17, 1947.

Hit the last home run at Ebbets Field in Brooklyn on September 22, 1957.

Uniform number 4 retired by the Dodgers.




Personal Quotes

"The Mets are wonderful but you can't take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn."
(on Duke Snider Night at the Polo Grounds in 1963)

"Today's baseball players are walking conglomerates. They have fantastic salaries, multiple investments, but we had one thing they don't have today: the train ride. We didn't always like it, but those rides kept us close as a team and as friends. Something you can't get on a two hour plane ride that used to take you fifteen hours on a train."

"The sport to which I owe so much has undergone profound changes, but it's still baseball. Kids still imitate their heroes on playgrounds. Fans still ruin expensive suits going after foul balls that cost five dollars. Hitting streaks still make the network news and hot dogs still taste better at the ballpark than at home."

"Man, if I made one million dollars I would come in at six in the morning, sweep the stands, wash the uniforms, clean out the office, manage the team and play the games."

On Jackie Robinson: "He knew he had to do well. He knew that the future of blacks in baseball depended on it. The pressure was enormous, overwhelming, and unbearable at times. I don't know how he held up. I know I never could have."

"We wept, Brooklyn was a lovely place to hit. If you got a ball in the air, you had a chance to get it out. When they tore down Ebbets Field, they tore down a little piece of me."

"The field was even greener than my boy's mind had pictured it. In later years, friends of ours visited Ireland and said the grass there was plenty green all right, but that not even the Emerald Isle itself was as green as the grass that grew in Ebbets Field."
 




Little did Chuck, of the Bay Ridge Celtics baseball team, know that he too would be a member someday, of this same great championship team that would include: Jackie Robinson, Gil Hodges, Pee Wee Reese, Carl Furrillo, Duke Snider, Roy Campanella, Billy Cox, Ralph Branca, Preacher Roe, and Carl Erskine (all members, along with Chuck, of the 1949 Dodgers).





Yankees Dodgers 1952 Original Wire Photo World Series
 

Duke Snider's home run, during Game 1 of the 1952 World Series. Also in the photo are Billy Cox and Peewee Reese (above)
(below) The Duke & his son, Kevin.




Duke Snider the actor - The Retired Gun

Look who's acting!  None other than Duke Snider! 
"There is nothing like having a buddy in show business," laughs Duke Snider.
The Los Angles Dodgers slugging outfielder (left), engaging in horseplay with one time Dodger teammate
Chuck Connors, will burst upon the nation's TV screens January 20th.  He and Chuck have roles in
"The Rifleman"
 'The Retired Gun'
(AP Wire Photo)
  (This press release is from Cowgirl's collection)

Who Shot Duke Snider?

The Dodger Slugger trades his bat for a gun. 

This release readsFOR RELEASE IN AM's 1/18.  SUGGESTED FOR USE WITH RICK DUBROW COLUM.  HCPO11403-1/14/59-HOLLYWOOD:  That mean tough-looking gent making the fast draw is none other than baseballs' famous Duke Snider who admits he can do a better job with a bat if it came right down to it.  Playing a bad-guy role in "The Rifleman," Snider, who gets shot, says "I think I died four times before I did it right. I couldn't get the darn gun cocked."  But Snider also admits it is pleasant work.    UPI TELEPHOTO 
(This press release was taken from Cowgirl's collection)

Duke Snider played an outlaw in ABC-TV's popular Western, "The Rifleman"The Retired Gun as Wallace, one of the Bailey gang.
As you can see from this press release the Duke was the last one to get his gun out of the holster.  The others were already falling to the ground.
The Duke grew a three-day beard to look mean.  But he ending up bursting into laughter when he was mowed down and lying "dead" in the street. 
Needless to say that scene had to be re-shot.
Chuck helped Duke get this role on "The Rifleman," as he did for many of his friends all through his career.

It is 1962 and Duke Snider has spent 15 years with the Dodgers in Brooklyn & Los Angles.  Chuck Connors (L), and comedian Danny Thomas are shown presenting Duke with a plaque honoring his great years, his favorite hars and Dodger shirts.  Duke responds to the occasion with his usual charm.

Sports heroes/stars that appeared with Chuck
Don Drysdale

Sid Gillman

Walter O'Malley

"The Dugout"
Chuck Connors Sports pages

Credits David Fury/The Man Behind the Rifle IMDB
Duke's baseball picture is from The Virtual Card Collection & Cowgirl's collection

Now available on Kindle..... Chuck Connors.....The Man Behind the Rifle by David Fury
Edited version of the 1997 book, with lots of new photos, and also a complete Rifleman episode/plot synopsis guide.

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