The 48-year-old Brundage -- the only manager in the four-year history of the Gwinnett Braves -- is entering his 16th season as a Minor League manager. Last season, he guided Atlanta's top affiliate to a 62-82 record, marking just the fifth time in 15 seasons his team finished below .500. Prior to that, the Portland, Ore., native had three successive winning seasons (231-198, .538) to start G-Braves history -- including a playoff berth as the Wild Card in the G-Braves inaugural 2009 season.
Prior to Gwinnett's inception, seven of the 11 teams that Brundage managed advanced to postseason play, and three of those squads won league championships. In fact, in his first year in the Atlanta system, he led the Richmond Braves to a 2007 IL championship, defeating the Durham Bulls in five games.
Brundage spent his first nine seasons as a skipper in the Seattle Mariners system, including his first stint in Triple-A with Tacoma in 2006 (74-70). His most notable success was achieved during his five seasons with Double-A San Antonio (2001-2005), during which time the Missions advanced to the playoffs in four seasons and won the Texas League title twice (2002, 2003). In 2003, he was named both Texas League Manager of the Year and Baseball America's Minor League Manager of the Year when San Antonio finished with a league-best 88-51 record, a Minors-best 18-game winning streak and a second-straight TL championship. He was also the manager for the West squad in the 2001 TL All-Star Game.
Brundage's other career stops include managerial posts with the Mariners' Class A Advanced California League affiliates in Riverside (1995) and Lancaster (1996), as well as the Double-A Southern League affiliate in Memphis (1997). He also served three seasons as a hitting coach with Triple-A Tacoma (1998-2000).
During his playing days, Brundage was originally drafted by the Philadelphia Phillies in the fourth round of 1986 out of Oregon State University. After two seasons in the Phillies organization -- including 14 games in Double-A Reading in 1987 -- he was traded to Seattle with RHP Mike Jackson and OF Glenn Wilson for OF Phil Bradley and LHP Tim Fortugno on Dec. 9, 1987. Over 10 Minor League seasons (1986-1994, 1998), the 1B/OF batted .275-16-261 in 784 games while finishing 1-5, 3.83 ERA 41 G, 1 GS as a pitcher.
Brundage spent much of his playing career in Triple-A, where he played six seasons for the now-defunct Calgary Cannons (1989-1994). He remains the Cannons all-time leader in games played (354) and walks drawn (208), and ranks third in runs scored (196) and sixth in hits (302).
In 1992, Brundage was converted to a pitcher at the Arizona Instructional League and was later selected in the Minor League phase of the Rule 5 Draft by Montreal, but was released in Spring Training and re-signed by the Mariners. He became a player/coach for Calgary in 1993 and 1994, and was even pressed into game action for one game while coaching with Tacoma in 1998.
Brundage is one of the most decorated amateur athletes in Oregon state history. He graduated from McKay H.S. in Salem, where he earned All-State honors in football, basketball and baseball. Brundage also spent 11 years as a Golden Gloves boxer, during which time he defeated three future Olympic Gold Medalists. While at Oregon State, Brundage earned All-American honors as an outfielder in 1986 while serving as punter and backup quarterback for the Beavers football team.
Brundage and his wife, Dameron, reside in Gwinnett in the offseason, with their three children, Beau, Baylor and Barrett.
Brundage replaces National Baseball Hall-of-Fame member Ryne Sandberg, who guided the IronPigs to a 155-132 (.540) record and a trip to the 2011 Governors' Cup Finals during his two seasons at the helm. Lehigh Valley posted just a 184-248 (.426) mark in its first three seasons under Dave Huppert.
A shot of Brundy -- more on the new IronPigs skipper
* Brundage joined the Oregon State football team only after head coach Joe Avezzano put an ad in the school newspaper looking for a new punter following an injury to starter Chip Stempeck.
* As 38-point underdogs to Washington, Brundage's Oregon State Beavers pulled off (at the time) the biggest "upset" in college football history with a 21-20 victory over the Huskies on Oct. 19, 1985. The record upset stood until 2007, when Stanford shocked USC, 24-23, as a 41-point underdog.
* Tabbed as one of the best amateur athletes in Oregon state history, Brundage became the second-ever athlete to be named First-Team All-State in football, basketball and baseball -- the first was former NBA and MLB player Danny Ainge.
* Brundage spent 11 years as a Golden Gloves boxer, during which time he defeated three future Olympic Gold Medalists.
* In 1985, Brundage suffered the loss (4 IP, 3 H, 2 R) for the Alaska Goldpanners in the 80th Midnight Sun Game, held annually on the Summer Solstice in Fairbanks, Alaska. The game begins at 10:30 p.m. and ends around 1:30 a.m. the following morning -- never using artificial lighting. Notable alumni of the game include former MLB stars such as Tom Seaver, Dave Winfield, Jason Giambi and Terry Francona.
* During his 15 years in the Minor Leagues, Brundage has managed numerous Major League stars including Raul Ibanez, Rafael Soriano, Shin-Soo Choo, Felix Hernandez, Adam Jones, Asdrubal Cabrera, Jason Heyward, Freddie Freeman, Craig Kimbrel and Tommy Hanson.
* While at the reins of the Double-A Memphis Chicks in 1997, Brundage managed 23-year-old catcher Dusty Wathan -- the Phillies current Double-A manager.
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