The Atlanta Braves will name Fredi Gonzalez as their new manager according to a report from Fox 5 Sports. Gonzalez has previous ties to the Braves as he was Atlanta's third base coach from 2003-2006 and prior to that was a manager in the minor league system.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution also recently speculated that Gonzalez would be the Braves choice to replace Bobby Cox, getting a couple of players to go on the record with their thoughts on the matter.
"Fredi Gonzalez is always first in my mind that pops up, just because this organization has been run the same for so long," pitcher Derek Lowe said. "I can't imagine, especially since [Braves president John] Schuerholz is still here and Bobby's going to go upstairs, so you're going to have that same group of guys that have been running this organization successfully for so long, I can't see them all of a sudden saying, ‘Hey, let's go in a completely different direction than we've ever been in.'
"I think Fredi would be a great choice," outfielder Matt Diaz said. "I was only here one year with him, but watching him in Florida and the way his players responded to him in Florida ... No offense to Hanley [Ramirez], but with the way Hanley handled that ball and the way Fredi handled that situation, Fredi earned a lot of respect from me, too."
Gonzalez most recently managed the Florida Marlins, but was fired after the Marlins began the 2010 season with a 34-36 record, shortly after he benched superstar shortstop Hanley Ramirez for what he perceived to be a lack of hustle. Gonzalez went 276-279 in parts of four seasons with Florida.
With his ties to the Braves, as well as the front office, it seems this move will be a smooth transition.