There is a famous baseball song titled "Willie, Mickey, and the Duke". I still hum to myself while in China. The song recalls a time when New York City had three baseball teams: the Yankees, the Giants, and the Dodgers. The Willie in the song was Willie Mays who played for the New York Giants. Mickey was Mickey Mantle who played for the Yankees. The Duke was Duke Snider who played for the Brooklyn Dodgers. Now the era that Willie, Mickey, and the Duke dominated the New York baseball scene was before my time. It in ended in 1957 when the Giants and Dodgers moved to the West Coast. I believe Willie, Mickey, and the Duke were all probably still playing in the majors when I was born in 1964. And I recollect seeing Willie play for the Mets in the '73 World Series. I think it is quite something to observe that when I was Tony's age, the legendary Will Mays was still a great player.
But it is Duke Snider who I have the most and fondest recollections of from his time working with Dave Van Horne on broadcasts of Montreal Expos games. They will always be my favorite play-by-play and colour commentator pair to have ever worked a baseball game. I grew up with them and they turned me into a baseball fan. So, to read of Snider's passing away brings back memories of the time I cut out the major league standings and pasted them into scrapbooks -- I thought I was living through history. I don't need to use scrapbooks anymore, thanks to the Internet, and so I wonder if the kids of today, like Tony, will have the same fondness for things that were in such smaller supplies when I was growing up.