Salem Hills Product Working, Waiting For Major League Call-Up

May 21, 2022, 8:10 PM
Albuquerque Isotope infielder Taylor Snyder meets with media prior to game against Salt Lake Bees on May 21, 2022.

SALT LAKE CITY –¬†Taylor Snyder’s most recent trip to Salt Lake hasn’t been ideal, but it’s a homecoming that Snyder wasn’t sure would be possible just a few years ago.

An injury kept Snyder from taking the field against the Salt Lake Bees but it didn’t stop a cavalcade of family and friends from coming to Smith’s Ballpark to see Snyder’s Albuquerque Isotopes against the hometown Bees.

Taylor played at Salem Hills High School before joining his brother JC at Salt Lake Community College. After two years with SLCC, Snyder transferred to Colorado State University-Pueblo where he was  drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the 13th round of the 2016 MLB draft. Snyder is currently listed in the Rockies Triple-A affiliate Albuquerque Isotopes roster.

The son of nine-year major leaguer Cory Snyder, Taylor grew up in major league clubhouses and on the field, making the sight of stars commonplace.

“I feel like we had a unique experience with a dad that has been there and done that. He kind of knew the ins and outs and knew what he wanted to prepare us for. It was a unique way to come up,” Snyder said of growing up in a baseball family. “My dad was with the Mariners when he was coaching in¬†Double and Triple A. We had guys like Chris Taylor and Brad Miller and Kyle Seager. So I got to be around them. It gave me a perspective of what to expect.”

After being drafted out of high school by the Seattle Mariners in the 34th round, Taylor decided to forego pro baseball, instead joining the Bruins.

“I went to Salt Lake and actually went through some struggles. I learned a lot of things about myself and my game. Everybody’s journey is different. Everybody’s path is different,” Snyder said of his choice to attend SLCC over signing with the Mariners. “When I didn’t go in the top 10 rounds, it was a pretty easy decision to go to a junior college and just try to have another good year and sign again.”

His unexpected struggles at SLCC threw a wrench into Snyder’s professional baseball plans.

“I think there was a reason I needed to go to Salt Lake and go through what I did, and struggle and grind and feel what it feels like to be at the bottom. I actually got benched at Salt Lake. Never in a million years would have thought that would have happened to me.”

The frustration caused Snyder to question his place in baseball, “I learned a lot about myself, I learned a lot about the game. Actually, coming out of Salt Lake thought I was done. I thought that my time in baseball had had reached its end.”

Thinking that his baseball playing career could be over, Snyder got one last opportunity to continue playing at CSU-Pueblo. A strong season led to the Rockies selecting Snyder in 2016.

Since that time, Snyder has advanced through four levels of minor league play but still waits to receive that major league call-up. Asked what has kept Snyder in the game through the ups and downs of his career, he talked about family.

“You create this support system that you’re not only playing for yourself, you’re playing for this system that’s followed you through. They’ve supported you and and paid for you and and brought you up. So you have this team on your back that’s what really drives me to continue to play.”

He continued, “I have this incredible support system that I want to succeed for them as much as I want to succeed for myself. At the end of the day to play as long as I have you have to love the game for sure. Because the game will beat you up for sure. It doesn’t matter who you are, the game will beat you up. It’ll humble you. So you at the end of the day you have to love it for sure.”

Following the series in Salt Lake, Snyder expects to reports to Arizona where he will begin to rehab the oblique injury that held him out this week. “At first it felt like I was shot with an arrow, but it’s feeling better now. Hopefully it just takes two or three weeks to get back.”

One thing is certain, Snyder will attack his rehab the same way he has attacked his playing career, with determination and focus.


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