When ‘Spud’ Murray Met Marilyn

Meredith W. ‘Spud’ Murray, a pitcher for the New York Yankees from 1960-68, died at home in East Waterford, PA, earlier this month. Writing for the Delaware County Times, Ed Gelbhart recalled a conversation with Murray in which he spoke of meeting Marilyn (probably while Joe DiMaggio was training the Yankees in St Petersburg, Florida, in 1961.)

‘Mr. Murray had a thousand stories, like the time all the players were eating at the same hotel during spring training. The great Joe DiMaggio, by now a batting instructor, entered the dining room a little late. He surveyed the scene, noticed an empty seat at Mr. Murray’s table, and decided to eat with him that night.

Later that spring, Mr. DiMaggio introduced “Spud” to Marilyn Monroe.

“Wow, ‘Spud,’ what did you think of Marilyn?” I once asked him.

“Spud,” a master of understatement, simply replied, “She seemed like a nice girl.” ‘

Marilyn in Fort Lauderdale

Leaving Florida after a short holiday, 1961

In March 1961, while Marilyn was recovering from illness, ex-husband Joe DiMaggio invited her to join him for a relaxing break in Florida. According to today’s Orlando Sentinel, Marilyn visited the Sheraton Fort Lauderdale Beach Hotel during her stay…

“The New York Yankees once made the hotel their home during spring training, and it is said that a chunk of the bar remains missing, where the former owner broke it off so Marilyn Monroe could sign it.”

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