A month after reporting he was likely a lock to return, AJC’s Jeff Schultz is now reporting that Brian Snitker’s future with the team looks murky. Jon Heyman has also been on the record saying that the Braves are assessing the managerial position and that internal options Ron Washington and Bo Porter are being considered. This surely does not appear to bode well for Snitker’s future with the team.
While Snitker could easily be retained somewhere within the system, it is looking less and less like he will return. It is hard not to like the guy after years of torture watching Fredi Gonzalez manage, but Snitker just does not play enough small ball for a team full of contact bats. He constantly goes with relievers who seem to be struggling in close games. However, he has exceeded expectations from when he was named interim manager, and the players do love playing for him.
What really stands out here is who is being considered for the position. If Bo Porter or Ron Washington become the next manager of the team, it will be the first time they finally go with a Bobby Cox padawan. While Cox is an Atlanta legend, Gonzalez was a nightmare and Snitker has been pedestrian. It is absolutely time for the Braves to go in a new direction as they look towards the future and the next generation of Braves baseball.
Between the two candidates, one would have to think Washington would be the favorite. He has much more playoff experience but also has had off the field concerns. He replaced Porter as third base coach, and he was named as a special assistant to the GM. It just seems strange to transition him into the front office and then throw him in the fire as manager.
It is also interesting to see that Terry Pendleton is not receiving consideration for the gig as well, considering his long tenure in the Braves dugout. Perhaps he is not interested in the job, or the Braves want a new look, but that was an interesting observation.
This will be a situation worth monitoring in the coming weeks, but things do not look good considering these reports came out of right field.