Ex-catcher Walbeck to manage Rome Braves

Former major league catcher Matt Walbeck will manage the Braves’ Class-A Rome affiliate, replacing Paul Runge.

Walbeck, 41, was the Pittsburgh Pirates’ Double-A manager the past two seasons, and won Eastern League Manager of the Year honors in 2010.

The Braves hired Walbeck after Runge took a minor league field coordinator position with the Houston Astros. In November, the Braves announced Runge was moving up to the Rome position after six years managing the rookie-league Danville team.

Runge interviewed for the Astros job at the Winter Meetings in December.

Walbeck played 11 seasons for five major league teams from 1993 to 2003.

10 comments Add your comment


January 7th, 2011
3:30 pm

Looks like a solid replacement for RUNGE. Evidently, WREN’s getting it done within the staff as well as field personnel.

2 hot scott

January 7th, 2011
4:20 pm

Sounds like a good hire, wish the team would have looked at Andy Haines, who manages in the Marlins organization and was recently named one of the top 10 managers in minor league baseball. Andy is a friend of mine. Good luck, Matt.

Tech Rules

January 7th, 2011
4:33 pm

Why would the Eastern League AA moty take a A position?

At Braves

January 7th, 2011
4:57 pm

Do we know yet who will be the manager in Mississippi?


January 7th, 2011
6:14 pm

Sounds good, we’re ready for baseball season in Rome right now (may hafta get the snowblowers out next week tho)


January 7th, 2011
7:05 pm

Walbeck also managed in Erie (where I’m from) and did an outstanding job, great hire Frank.

Scott Cohen

January 8th, 2011
9:24 am

Walbeck was not rehired by Pittsburgh after being their AA manager of the year awards. Pittsburgh wouldn’t say why Walbeck wasn’t rehired, but some say that it was because he didn’t follow organizational procedures. Walbeck found himself persona non grata at the Winter meetings and no one would offer him a position. It will be interesting to see how he fares at Rome. He flatly denies having done anything that would have gotten him fired by Pittsburgh.


January 8th, 2011
7:31 pm

Great article about Walbeck in New BBA — the same issue that rates the NL East prospects. Also notable that Wellman does not have a job for 2011.

Roll Tider

January 9th, 2011
3:47 pm

What happened to Ingle that was at Rome?

AJ in Augusta

January 13th, 2011
5:36 pm

Hell, I’d wash the clubhouse floors for a Braves’ minor league team instead of working for an organization as well-run as the Pirates!

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