WINDSOR, Colo. – Cory Snyder, a former nine-year Major League right fielder and member of the 1984 USA Olympic Team, has been named manager and hitting coach of the Northern Colorado Owlz for the 2022 campaign, the club announced today.
Previously, Snyder held multiple managerial Minor League positions and a front office stint with the Orem Owlz, a former Rookie League affiliate of the Los Angeles Angels.
Needing a person who commands respect and is capable of guiding today’s complex athlete, managing member Jeff Katofsky turned to Snyder to answer the call.
“In looking for a leader, our Owlz needed someone who could teach, motivate, and direct the complicated athletes of today,” Katofsky said. “I did not have to look further than my old friend Cory Snyder. We are lucky to have Cory, whose experience as a star player, hitting coach, manager, and front office executive gives the Owlz the perfect person to continue the Owlz’s dominance of the Pioneer Baseball League.”
Synder noted that his number one job is to bring a title to the Northern Colorado area, and he said he will do everything in his power to do that.
“It’s a huge privilege for me to work here in Northern Colorado,” Snyder said. “I have known Jeff for a long time and spent many years with him in Orem. I am very excited about the project; it is going to bring a lot of good things to the city of Windsor. Even though it is our first full season in the Pioneer League, I want to let the fans know that I will do everything I can to bring a championship to Northern Colorado.”
In 2019, Snyder served as the Owlz’ director of public relations. He had spent the 2017 and 2018 seasons in Taiwan, managing the CTBC Brothers in the Chinese Professional Baseball League while leading them to the 2017 Taiwan Series (the CPBL’s World Series).
In 2016, Snyder managed Pericos de Puebla in the Mexican League, and led the club to its second Mexican League title. He was just the fourth American manager to win a Mexican League championship, and the first in 15 years.
That followed several years in the Seattle Mariners organization, serving as the hitting coach for the Jackson Generals (AA) from 2011-13, and the Tacoma Rainiers (AAA) from 2014-15.
The St. George Roadrunners ownership named Snyder their skipper for their inaugural 2007 campaign, and he led the team to the Golden Baseball League Southern Division 1st Half title in 2009. The team folded at the end of the 2009 season, but when the owners announced they were starting a franchise in Maui, Snyder made the move with them, and he managed No Koa Ikaika Maui for their inaugural year.
As a player in Major League Baseball, Snyder clubbed 149 home runs with the Indians, Toronto Blue Jays, Chicago White Sox, San Francisco Giants, and LA Dodgers, including a single-season-best 33 in 1987 with Clevland. He twice finished among the American League’s top-10 in home runs (1987 and 1988), and his 14 assists in 1988, and .997 fielding percentage in 1989, led the entire AL.
He made his MLB debut in 1986 and finished fourth in Rookie of the Year voting that year after batting .272 and hitting 24 home runs.
Snyder was a three-time All-American for Brigham Young University and the Indians selected him fourth overall in the 1984 MLB Draft. That same year he represented the USA at the Olympic Games in Los Angeles, Cali., alongside Mark McGwire, shortstop—and future Hall of Famer—Barry Larkin, designated hitter Will Clark, and catcher BJ Surhoff.
Team USA advanced to the final game before losing to Japan, though no medals were awarded due to baseball only having demonstration status in LA.
The five-time league champion Owlz, who did not play in 2020 or 2021, will begin play in the 2022 Pioneer Baseball League presented by TicketSmarter on May 25 with a series against the Great Falls Voyagers. Their Future Legends Complex home opener will be on June 1 against the Rocky Mountain Vibes.
— Jerry Del Priore