When I heard that Justin Snyder had signed with the St. Paul Saints of the independent American Association, I knew I needed to find a photo that would accurately represent my memories of his time in Trenton.
I think that one’s perfect.
Snyder spent the 2009 and 2010 seasons at Waterfront Park and was often the life of the clubhouse, with his light-hearted nature often having the guys laughing for what seemed like an endless amount of time. His over-the-top impression of Tony Franklin was a particular favorite.
But what will get overlooked with Snyder was how hard he worked. Listed at 5-foot-9 and 190 pounds, the 25-year-old was always viewed as an underdog, but always took his on-field work seriously. While I certainly recall the fun moments with Snyder, I also think back to a time where he cursed loudly out of frustration for not getting to a ball that he had to range way to his left for and ultimately had no chance to get while at second base…during batting practice.
Snyder was a league All-Star in his first two seasons in the organization (NYPL in 2007 and SAL in 2008), but his career took a turn for the worst when he was skipped a level from Low-A to Double-A to start the 2009 season. The versatile native of California endured an abysmal year, hitting just .195 with three home runs and 29 RBI and while the numbers improved last season, the highlight of his 2010 campaign was arguably his scoreless inning of relief that he spun at Waterfront Park in a miserable, blowout game.
Snyder, who did have a brief call-up to Triple-A Scranton last season, was released on the last day of minor league spring training by the Yankees and signed with St. Paul several days ago. In his first three games with the club, he’s hitting .308 with an RBI, a walk, two strikeouts and two errors.
Mike Ashmore, mashmore98 AT gmail.com