Snyder, hero of ’79 championship, honored

SOURCE: News release from Logansport Mayor Dave Kitchell

Generations of baseball players, coaches and fans know pitchers often work around the No. 8 hitter to get to the last hitter in the line-up.

One Major League manager who starred for the New York Yankees knows of at least one time when pitching to the No. 9 hitter in the line-up wasn’t such a great idea.

Forty years ago this coming Sunday, former Logansport second baseman Mark Snyder, batting ninth for the Berries in the 1979 state championship game, blooped a single to the outfield that scored the winning run in a dramatic 6-5 win over Evansville Memorial, ending a 59-game unbeaten streak over two citizens.

Logansport Mayor Dave Kitchell has named him the Citizen of the Week for his heroic single that is remembered as one of the most important hits in school history.

“Last weekend, USA Today sports writer Mike Lopresti wrote an account of the game, and it appeared in the Indianapolis Business Journal,” Kitchell says. “The game is one he described as the most epic of Indiana state baseball championships. Mark is proof that everyone on a team, regardless of their average or their place in the batting order, matters in the big picture and has a crucial role to play.”

The Berries finished 29-4 that season and the pitcher who served up the winning hit to Snyder did well after that. Don Mattingly went on to win a battle title for the New York Yankees and managed the Los Angeles Dodgers before accepting his current post as skipper of the Miami Marlins. The championship was the third of four for Jim Turner, former coach of the Berries.

Snyder now lives in Georgia, and his parents, Rex and Carol Snyder, retired to Franklin, Ind.

Snyder will receive a $20 gift certificate and a certificate from the Mayor’s Office. The program recognizes Logansport natives, current and former residents and is sponsored by the Mayor’s Office.