BRIAN SNITKER – ATLANTA BRAVES
The shortest-tenured manager in the division, what Brian Snitker got out of the Atlanta Braves last year is outstanding.
Long after the Braves and Nationals positions in the standings were settled in September, Washington rolled in for a late-season weekend series at Turner Field. Despite playing out the string, and the ballpark, Atlanta came out in full force, battling every game as if the two teams were in a playoff battle.
For a team virtually eliminated in April, Snitker’s effect on his kids speaks volumes on his managerial ability. No wonder his players asked for the interim tag to go.
If there is a surprise team heading into 2017, look no further than the Braves. With a new park, a revamped rotation, and a cast of hungry prospects, Atlanta is the X-factor in the division.
Whatever Snitker is selling, his players are buying. By itself, that will win a few games they have no right to.
Snitker made 33 replay challenges last year, winning 18. A winning decision, for sure.
Although the Braves are a year or two away from contending, they have the talent and the manager to decide who wins the division. One bad weekend from Washington may tip the balance.