Former Pelicans’ manager Snitker takes over Braves

pel-snitkerFollowing the firing manager Fredi Gonzalez on Monday, the Atlanta Braves announced that former Myrtle Beach Pelicans skipper Brian Snitker was named as the club’s interim manager. Snitker will be the first former Birds skipper to manage in Major League Baseball.

Snitker, 60, was the first manager in the history of the Pelicans, guiding the club to a 238-179 (.571) record in three seasons from 1999-2001. He led Myrtle Beach to the Mills Cup Co-Championship in 1999 before winning it all solely in 2000. In each of those two seasons, he was named the Carolina League’s Manager of the Year.

The Decatur, Ill. native was originally drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the 25th round in the 1976 draft out of the University of New Orleans. Snitker played four minor league seasons, all in the Braves’ organization, from 1977-80, batting a combined .254/.316/.390 and reaching as high as Triple-A. He spent two separate stints in the Carolina League, appearing in 14 games with Kinston in 1978 and three contests with Durham in 1980. He became a minor league manager for the first time in 1982, piloting Low-A Anderson in the South Atlantic League.

Snitker takes over a Braves club with the very worst record in the majors at 9-28 (.243). He began the 2016 campaign, his 20th as a minor league manager, at the helm of the Triple-A Gwinnett Braves, steering them to a 19-20 (.487) mark, good for second in the International League South Division. In addition to managing in the minors, Snitker has also served in various roles in the Braves’ organization, including the club’s big league bullpen coach and third base coach.

Snitker’s son Troy was selected by Atlanta in the 19th round of the 2011 draft out of North Georgia College and State University. He played parts of two seasons with the organization, including one game with the Carolina League’s Lynchburg Hillcats in 2012.

Photo courtesy of MiLB

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