Ex-castoff Snyder delivers key blow

BOSTON -- After eight years in the minor leagues, Red Sox third baseman Brandon Snyder has learned not to take any chance for granted.

“I’ve had a lot of opportunities in the past,” Snyder said. “I’ve taken advantage of them, but I’ve also squandered a few. It’s one of those things where you’ve just got to take them when you can.”

Snyder has done exactly that since being called up June 25. Tuesday night’s contest against the San Diego Padres saw Snyder hit a three-run double in the fourth inning to give the Red Sox a lead they wouldn’t squander in a 4-1 win.

“[I was] just trying to get something up in the air, try and drive the ball a little bit,” Snyder said. “At that point in the game he’s thrown a lot of pitches so [I’m] kind of hoping he would finally make a mistake.”

Padres starter Robbie Erlin, making just his third career start, left a 90 mph fastball up in the zone that Snyder clobbered to deep left center, just missing a grand slam.

“I hit that one pretty good. I was kind of watching it, kind of hoping it would [get out],” Snyder said.

Just two days ago, the 26-year-old Snyder hit a two-run double off Toronto's Mark Buehrle before lining a key single in the ninth inning that sparked the Red Sox's walk-off win. Snyder said he flashed back to that moment while he was battling Erlin for nine pitches Tuesday night.

“This is a guy that’s been a good offensive player in the sparing time that he’s played with the Rangers, a little bit with Baltimore, and what we’re seeing in the couple of games he’s played for us,” manager John Farrell explained. “The bases-clearing double in the fourth was the difference in this game.”

From castoff (Baltimore Orioles in 2010, Texas Rangers in 2012) to difference-maker, Snyder has made the most of his time in the majors but is just now taking the time to enjoy his success. Despite the tough path his career has taken, the third baseman knows that it’s time to move on.

“It used to bother me. Now I really don’t care,” Snyder said. “I just try to go out there every day and try to help the team win, and what happens happens.”