Brian Snitker sure sounds like Braves breakup with fan favorite is looming

After a tough outing in his best Rick Ankiel impression, Brian Snitker had a somber message for Charlie Culberson.

Washington Nationals v Atlanta Braves
Washington Nationals v Atlanta Braves / Todd Kirkland/GettyImages

Charlie Culberson's second act as an MLB pitcher has been a little touch and go. While it's impressive to witness Culberson try to make such a transition at this point in his career, it's also unlikely that he starts with the big-league squad. Brian Snitker's owes Culberson a chance to make an impression in Braves camp, and he has stuck to his word.

Saturday's outing did not go according to plan, as Culberson lasted less than an inning and gave up four earned runs. He also hit as Orioles player with his first pitch.

That's less than ideal.

Culberson signed a minor-league deal with Atlanta this offseason as a relief pitcher. Sending him to Gwinnett, or possibly lower in the Braves system to refine his approach as a pitcher, seems like the right move.

Snitker hasn't yet made such a sweeping declaration about the Braves plans with the former utility player, but his comments after Saturday's start weren't a great sign.

“We’ll see where it takes him,” Snitker said, per the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “He likes to play baseball, whatever position. We wish him the best. Charlie has been a big part of this, had success here. He’s just a wonderful guy. If he wants to do that, I’m happy he’s getting the opportunity.”

It's not you, it's me. Thanks for the memories.

Will Charlie Culberson make it as a pitcher with the Braves?

Culberson consistently sits around 91-92 MPH with his fastball. He's still developing his pitch arsenal, but offers some breaking stuff to induce contact. In his first outing this spring the Rome, Georgia native allowed just one hit and no earned runs.

One thing that cannot be questioned is Culberson's love for the game. At 34 years old, he's extended his career with a fresh approach. Embracing the role of a two-way player of sorts could lead to Culberson being fast-tracked to the majors.

“I wouldn’t be surprised we see him at some point during the year,” AJ Minter told The Athletic earlier this spring.

If that's not a ringing endorsement, I don't know what is. One thing is certain though -- Culberson's will have to wait.

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