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Snider Purchased by Mets

Apr. 1, 1963 - The Duke is coming home. The Mets announced tonight the long-awaited purchase of Duke Snider (pictured left in 1955) for $40,000 from the Los Angeles Dodgers. The 36-year-old outfielder, a Dodger since 1947, was one of the club’s most popular and productive players when the Dodgers were based in Brooklyn. Snider, carrying his career .300 batting average, 1,995 hits, 389 homers, and 1,271 RBIs (the latter two figures are the highest ever achieved by a Dodger, Brooklyn or Los Angeles) will report to Casey Stengel in St. Petersburg, Fla. Thursday night. Snider, not too long ago lauded as the Duke of Flatbush, is expected to be platooned in right field, possibly with Cliff Cook. Earlier during spring training, Snider had said that if he was to be traded, he preferred it to be a winning team — “Yes, the Yankees.” More recently, Snider was quoted as having said he would be “happy to play with the Mets” and that he figured he could play 90 to 100 games in 1963. Last year, he appeared in 80 games, mostly as a pinch hitter. After today’s trade, Snider said: “After 16 years in a Dodger uniform, it’s tough to be traded, even when you know it’s coming. You get a funny feeling, and a couple of tears have to drop. But I talked to my wife and she’s very happy about it and so am I, because the change should do me good.” Duke added the hardest thing for him to do will be to play against his “old teammates.” The Dodgers’ first meeting with the Mets is scheduled for April 29 in New York.


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