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In honor of actor Andy Garcia and his (unintentionally) hilarious reaction to Sofia (Mary Corleone) Coppola's death scene in "The Godfather, Part III."
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June 11, 1968

Posted 02-26-2017 at 01:02 PM by TommyJohn
Updated 06-04-2018 at 03:20 PM by TommyJohn

June 11, 1968
vs. New York Yankees
at Yankee Stadium

By this point in the season, Eddie Stanky was all but a raving maniac. The Brat did not take losing well, and the Sox' bad start and inability to extract itself from the resulting quagmire ate away at him.

His first act was to blame the media for the team's bad play and he barred them from the Sox clubhouse. Next he tried to motivate the players by introducing a series of petty fines for failing to execute in game situations. Sox players could be made to pay for failing to lay down a successful bunt, missing a hit-and-run, failing to move a runner over and other miscues.

This caused a lot of discontent within the ranks. Conflicts between players and manager, which had been tolerated when the Sox were winning, brimmed to the surface. The new players, some of them veterans, didn't care for Stanky's style at all.

One such vet was Russ Snyder. A career .280 hitter with the Orioles, his average dropped into the .100 range with the Sox.

He was at the .130 mark without a single home run or RBI to his name when he took the field this night against the Yankees in front of 4,825 fans not all that interested in this contest between two once winning teams now fallen on hard times.

Sometimes a player, no matter how bad he is, rises up to the occasion and has his moment in the sun. This night was Snyder's one moment with the White Sox.

It happened in the top of the 3rd. The Sox jumped out to a 1-0 lead and had the bases loaded when Snyder stepped up to the plate. He proceeded to lay into a Bill Monbouquette pitch and send it high into the New York night. The ball ended its journey in the Yankee Stadium outfield seats for a grand slam, giving Snyder his first home run and RBIs of the season.

He topped off his performance with a sacrifice fly in the top of the 9th, giving him 5 RBIs for the evening. His bat provided the margin of victory in the Sox' 9-5 win.

Snyder summed up his feelings after the game. "I finally said to hell with the fines and to hell with him!" He said of his manager.

Two days later, Snyder was traded to the Indians in exchange for Leon "Daddy Wags" Wagner, another flashy power hitter whose best days were behind him. Once in Cleveland, Snyder regained his stroke and hit at a .280 clip the rest of the way.

Snyder was doubtless relieved to be away from Eddie Stanky and the stressful environment caused by the skipper's style. But for one game, he was able to rise to the occasion and have his moment in the sun.

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