Russ Nixon was one of the unluckiest managers in baseball history. In 1982, he replaced John McNamara as manager of the post-Big Red Machine Reds, inheriting a team that finished last in runs and near the bottom in ERA. He was fired following the ’83 season with a 101-131 record.
Nixon was managing in the Braves system when Chuck Tanner was fired 39 games into the lost season of ’88. He led the Braves to a 130-216 record, about as good as you could expect from those dreadful teams.
When the ax fell on June 22, 1990, Nixon took it in stride.
“Heck, I’ve been expecting it,” he said in a telephone interview from his home in Covington. “It’s been evident the last two weeks. One of the bullets was going to get me, they’ve been shooting so many at me.”
Until Frank Wren was dismissed last October, Nixon was the last manager or general manager fired by the Braves. He probably deserved better.