Dave Schneck

From BR Bullpen

1991 Mets Wiz #351 Dave Schneck

David Lee Schneck

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Biographical Information[edit]

An ace pitcher in high school, Dave Schneck was 20-2 on the hill and his team won the Lehigh Valley League title all three years he was on the staff. He also hit .362 as a senior.

He injured his collarbone in spring training 1968 and decided to move to the outfield. Mets farm director Whitey Herzog agreed. Schneck broke his wrist that year but hit okay in the Appalachian League, earning him a late promotion to the AA Texas League.

Schneck got married that off-season, but a day after returning from his honeymoon got drafted. He spent 14 months in Vietnam, missing the 1969-1970 seasons; half of his platoon was killed during one fight.

After returning from the war, Schneck rejoined the Mets system in 1971 and was even invited to Spring Training with the club. He was sent to the Visalia Mets of the California League and homered 26 times for them, placing him fourth in the league. Visalia was a homer haven, though, as 6 of the league's top 10 home run hitters played for the Mets. Schneck was promoted to the Texas League once more and again hit under .200, though he homered another 8 times, giving him 34 long balls for his first full season as a batter.

Given a third crack at AA in 1972, Schneck did well for the Memphis Blues, hitting .304 with 24 homers. The Mets called him up in July. Even though he did not play the whole year with the Blues, Schneck was still tied for second in the Texas League in homers, two behind Gorman Thomas and he finished third in RBI. In his first game with New York, he hit clean-up, between Willie Mays and Rusty Staub and hit the winning two-run homer. A day later he made a great catch on a ball hit by Jerry Morales to save the game. The next time out, he went 3 for 4 with a homer and double and was earning comparisons to Mays. He faded from there and was in the minors the next month.

Schneck spent most of 1973 with the Tidewater Tides, getting a cup of coffee late in the year and pitching batting practice in the post-season.

In 1974, Mays retired and Schneck replaced him in center. He was second in the National League in average by the middle of April but Schneck faltered again and ultimately tallied only a .205 BA, in what would be his last MLB campaign. He tied a record for most AB in a game with 11, in a 25 inning contest, on 9/11/74.

Schneck played poorly in 1975 in AAA but again showed good power in 1976 and 1977 in the American Association (33 homers over two seasons) before retiring.

After retirement, Schneck ran a waterproofing company in Whitehall (PA, Lehigh County) and later set up an indoor batting cage and arcade center there.

In 1999 Schneck got his first at-bat in a game in 22 years, in a local adult league. A teammate of his son's, Schneck homered in his first time at the plate.

Records Held[edit]

  • Most at bats, extra inning game, 11, 9/11/74 (tied)

Related Sites[edit]

Source: "Mendoza's Heroes" by Al Pepper