Braves manager Brian Snitker’s family skips opening day trip to Philadelphia due to ‘hostile crowd’

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Brian Snitker has spent nearly four decades with the Atlanta Braves. During that time, he has become well-versed in what it takes to handle the Philadelphia Phillies crowds.

Snitker recently spoke about the way some of the Phillies’ fans treated his family and friends during last season’s NL Division Series. Snitker said some of the fan behavior had him concerned.

“It’s rough there,” Snitker said in an interview with Atlanta radio station WZGC last week. “And they don’t seem to mind, either, quite honestly. It was rough on them all last year to the point where it was concerning.”

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Brian Snitker of the Atlanta Braves watches a Grapefruit League spring training game against the New York Yankees at CoolToday Park March 21, 2024, in North Port, Fla. (Matthew Grimes Jr./Atlanta Braves/Getty Images)

The Braves won the World Series in 2021 and have taken the NL East crown six years in a row. But the Phillies have had the Braves’ number recently in the postseason. Philadelphia has qualified for the playoffs as a wild-card team over the past couple of years, knocking out Atlanta back-to-back years in an NLDS.

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The Phillies’ Citizens Bank Park celebrates its 20-year anniversary this season. It has become known as one of the loudest and most hostile environments for opposing teams.

Snitker said Philly had “by far the most hostile crowd,” and his wife would refuse to return to the Phillies’ ballpark. 

When asked what made his family feel unsafe at the ballpark, Snitker responded by saying, “I’m not going to get into all that. Let’s talk about today.”

Brian Snitker greets ob Thomson

Manager Brian Snitker (43) of the Atlanta Braves greets manager Rob Thomson (59) of the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park March 29, 2024, in Philadelphia.  (Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)

“My wife’s babysitting, and the grandkids are in school,” Snitker said in Atlanta’s dugout. “They wouldn’t be anywhere, honestly, other than home.

“This is a passionate fan base, and there’s a lot of energy in the air, and rightly so,” Snitker said. “This is a really good club. These fans are passionate about what they do. It’s a fun place to come play, quite honestly, because there is a lot of energy.”

Brian Snitker argues

Atlanta Braves manager Brian Snitker has words with an umpire during a game against the Kansas City Royals April 14 at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo. (William Purnell/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Snitker brushed off nearly 45,000 booing fans and broke out a wide smile and laughed as he jogged to the third base line during lineup introductions ahead of Atlanta’s 9-3 win over the Phillies on opening day.

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“They don’t boo nobodies,” Braves star pitcher Spencer Strider said. “That’s what I’ve been told. I like playing here. It’s a fun place to play. There’s passionate fans and a good team on the other side of the field. Usually it leads to a good game.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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