FW’s biggest offseason blunder
While it’s difficult to evaluate hitting coaches most would agree that Larry Parrish has been a flop. Braves hitters have regressed in virtually every offensive category, none more so than Jay Hey. The kid whose approach appeared wise beyond his years in 2010 suddenly looks clueless. Parrish, a first-time batting instructor, has to shoulder some of the blame.
Why Wren didn’t hire Don Baylor is beyond me. Twelve years ago, when Baylor was Bobby’s hitting coach, Andruw walked 36 more times than the previous season and cut his strikeouts by 26.
Chipper credited Baylor influence’s after winning NL MVP honors in ’99.
“He changed my attitude and changed my approach,” Jones said. “Hopefully, even though Don’s gone, I can keep improving.”
History is repeating in Arizona, where Baylor was hired the same week FW plucked Parrish from the Toledo Mud Hens. D’backs prodigy Justin Upton is having his best year in the majors, hitting a career-best .301 with an OPS more than .100 points higher than 2010 while dramatically reducing his strikeouts.
Braves hitters, meanwhile, have seen their strikeouts soar from the previous season. Only 2 NL teams have struck out more and only two have a worse OBP. Last year, under that awful Terry Pendleton, the Bravos ranked 1st in OBP and only four NL teams struck out less.