March 20, 2011

Show #139: Interviews with Roger McDowell and Larry Parrish

We talk with the Braves’ pitching and hitting instructors as well as discuss the future of Brooks Conrad.



110 Responses to “Show #139: Interviews with Roger McDowell and Larry Parrish”

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  1. 26
    Nate Says:

    What’s great about this situation is that we have depth to deal if we have injury issues this year. We have two pitchers that appear to be major league ready going for 1 spot, and then we have 2 really good arms in the minors that are pretty close (It sounds to me like Vizcaino might be more than a year away). Plus we have a chance to get Medlen back late August/ early September. This means the Braves have a lot of what everybody else needs, so if we need a bat, a defensive replacement, a base stealer, or a middle relief guy in July, then we’re going to get what we need. Pretty awesome if you ask me.

  2. 27
    Leah Says:

    Curt! #25 is a fantastic idea!

  3. 28
    Steve Says:

    Curt – agreed on #25. Genius on your part and it should happen.

  4. 29
    Steve Says:

    Walker, re #22, what’s your point? I don’t get it.

    Bub – re #23. I don’t think it’s about tantalizing a trade partner. I think someone at CBS heard something and reported it as news. It just makes no sense that the team would have made a definitive decision at this point.

  5. 30
    Lee Says:

    Great interview! Love this podcast, look forward to it every week now that it’s started back up as the season approaches.

  6. 31
    Curt Says:

    Sherrill. Again. Cut his ass.

  7. 32
    Kate Says:

    Curt, it’s only spring training. We have to wait until he blows regular season games before he gets cut.

  8. 33
    Leah Says:

    #31 sounds painful. A little harsh. Can’t we just send him to AAA?

  9. 34
    Walker Says:

    Lol I guess I don’t have a point. I agree with you. The difference a hitting coach makes on Major League hitters is marginal. Pitching coaches have way more impact.

  10. 35
    Walker Says:

    Off topic Question: Does being one the two best defensive center fielders in history combined with 400 HRs and 5 all star appearances make you a Hall of Famer?

    I think so. Even with Andruw’s recent years, he has a hall of fame resume. It shouldn’t be held against him that he dropped off quickly. He came in the league at 19 and may only be 33 but all those years playing 162 games and being banged up aged him combined with his weight. HE HAS MY VOTE!!

  11. 36
    Tim in Orlando Says:

    “Ladies and Gentlemen, You’re 2011 Atlanta Braves!”

    Well, I believe that see saw our starting lineup for the first time today: Prado (LF), McLouth (CF), Chipper (3B), BMac (C), Uggla (2b), JHey (RF), Gonzalez (SS) and Freeman (1B). Add Huddy on the mound and you’ve got a team with whom I’d be happy to go to battle. Unfortunately, we didn’t generate the offense that I would have expected with this lineup. And only by the grace of a sub (Jason Hicks) did we salvage a tie.

    Huddy started a bit shaky with a leadoff double to Wise on the first pitch of the game. We hear more from Mr. Wise later, unfortunately. After a wild pitch to move him to 3rd, he scored on a ground ball to 3rd. After that Huddy settled down and pitches well allowing no further runs. His final line; 1 earned run, 4 hits (2 doubles), 4Ks, 1 BB on 86 pitches (55 strikes, 31 balls) in six innings. Huddy got out of a couple of jams with a few unusual plays. In the 5th inning, the first two runners got on via a single and a walk. The pitcher (Nolasco) attempted to sacrifice but bunted the ball right back to Huddy who easily threw out the runner at 3rd. Next Wise struck out on a wild pitch but could not take 1st because it was occupied and there were less than two outs. Lucky for us because the two runners did advance. But now with two outs Huddy got a ground ball to Chipper to end the inning. Whew! Next inning with 1 out and a runner on 1st, the Marlins attempted a hit & run. But the batter popped up to the pitcher’s mound which Freeman caught. The runner got trapped off 1st base primarily due to a beautiful deek at 2nd base by Alex Gonzalez who made the runner believe that a throw was coming to 2nd. After he realized it was a popup, it was a footrace by him and Uggla to get back to 1st. Freeman tossed a very tricky throw to Uggla who beat the runner to 1st by half a step. Beautiful! Don’t think I’ve ever seen a play like that.

    Then came the 7th inning and George Sherrill. Ugh! Nasty inning: 3 runs, 4 hits (2 doubles including one by that Wise guy again to drive in two runs), 1 BB, & 1 HP. And it would have been worse if not for a beautiful relay (Heyward to Conrad to Chipper) to get Wise at 3rd. This is the second time I’ve seen Sherrill blow up an inning to give up the lead. I just don’t know about him? The other pitchers (Venters, Kimbrel, Abreu & Ascencio) pitched well. Especially Venters & Kimbrel. Kimbrel had a couple of 97, 98 & 99 MPH fastballs.

    On the offense we really only had one really good inning – the 3rd. Freeman started the rally with a long HR to right-center. A no doubt about it shot. That was followed by a Hudson single (he had two today with a huge grin on his face after each), a McLouth single which scored Huddy who was running on the pitch and a double by Chipper to score Nate all the way from 1st. That was the only serious threat we had during the game until the 9th. Trailing by 4 to 3 with two outs, the Marlin fans were cheering “Let’s go Marlins! Let’s go Marlins!” Then Jason Hicks hit a fly ball to left that I thought was sure out – ballgame. But the ball just carried and carried and carried. It easily cleared the left field wall – tie game! Wooo Whoo! Now we got’em. Uhhhhh, no we didn’t. Nothing much happened after that. No further hitting from the Bravos, but no runs for the Marlins either. We did play 11 innings – unusual for a spring training game. I did think that Uggla had his first HR of the spring. He hit a long, long fly ball to deep center field that had the center fielder all turned around. But at the last second, the CF caught it at the wall. Shoot!

    Oh well, a tie is better than a loss. But I was expecting better. The next game is an evening affair (6:05 PM start) against the Tigers who are really playing well this spring. Let’s hope we can general a bit more O.

  12. 37
    Steve Says:

    Lee – thanks! Glad you enjoy the show.

    Kate, re #32 – very funny and nothing but true in this case, for sure.

    I’m feeling less good about that feel good article covering his mechanics adjustment and the two scoreless innings he had recently. It’s going to be a rough ride with Sherrill for a while.

    Tim – thanks for the write up. Love the stuff about the deke at 2nd base by Gonzo.

  13. 38
    Curt Says:

    If Andruw Jones makes the HOF and Dale Murphy does not, MLB should cease functioning.

  14. 39
    Steve Says:

    Walker – here’s my very scientific, analytical assessment of Andruw’s HOF credentials: he just doesn’t feel like a hall of famer to me. And it is totally about the duration of his greatness. He was amazing. Unbelievable. But he needed to do it to longer and not fall off so precipitously. That kind of crash really sticks with the voters minds.

  15. 40
    Walker Says:


    I get your points but Jim Thome doesn’t feel like a HOFer but he is. Blyleven didn’t feel like one either but he is. Koufax had a short 5 year run and is in the HOF. It was an injury but he still didn’t play. He only had 165 wins. Duke Snider fell off at age 32. Approximately 1% of players in history are Hall of Famers. He’s the best defensive center fielder in the last 40 years and has 400 HRs with a chance for 500.How much rare or 1% can you get with that? Just my opinion.


    Just like Snider, at age 32 Dale Murphy’s stats dropped off considerably which is why he is not in the HOF. He was a good fielder also but not even close to Andruw. Andruw has a higher career slugging and OPS. He also came in 2nd in the 2005 MVP voting but a guy named Pujols beat him.

  16. 41
    Bubdylan Says:

    Curt, Steve, All, regarding Sherrill, you may know it already, but his L/R splits are ridiculous. I’ve never seen any as drastic as his. It’s concerning to me that the organization has mentioned him as a LOOGY. If they pitch him against RHB, they are insane.

    For his career, RHB’s OPS at .800 against him, LHB’s a measley .500, and the strike out to walk ratio is off the charts against lefties, bad against righties. I don’t the ERA difference cuz it’s not listed at Baseball Ref, but it must be just as big.

    Last year was the same. He stunk against righties and tore lefites up. But Torre amazingly pitched him to MORE RHB’s on the year than left.

    And in case you’re wondering, his ERA this spring versus lefties: 2.50, against RHB’s, over 8.00!

    If Fredi fails to see and react to this, I’m gonna lose it.

  17. 42
    Bubdylan Says:

    *concerning to me that the organization has NOT mentioned him as a LOOGY.

  18. 43
    Bubdylan Says:

    No Andruw in the HOF. He smirked when he struck out.

  19. 44
    Nate Says:

    “Just one of those spring-training outings,” Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez said. “Nothing to over-react over. He’s pitched pretty good until today.”(from DOB on Sherrill)

    Straight from the Bobby Cox guide to managing, but I agree it’s the Spring. Two words, Jesse Chavez.

  20. 45
    Anne Says:

    Apologies if this has already been discussed, but you guys talk about them all the time…April 10th post-game concert by the Avett Brothers.

    In other news…bobbleheads are back! June 15th – Jason Heyward, July 28th – Chipper Jones, August 18th – Dan Uggla

  21. 46
    Curt Says:


    Dale Murphy began his career as a catcher and went on to become one of the best players in the 80s. Not for a couple of years, but for the entire decade. If he had played in the time of watered down pitching and little league parks, or for a team that actually had some protection for him, he would already be in the HOF. Or if he had spent his career as a Yankee, he would be in.

    From Jayson Stark:
    “…in the ’80s, Murphy led all National Leaguers in runs and hits, tied Mike Schmidt for the most RBIs and finished second to Schmidt in homers. He was a back-to-back MVP. He won five straight Gold Gloves. He was a 30-homer, 30-steal man when that was still a rarity. He once got more All-Star votes than any other player in the whole darned sport. And he was one of baseball’s classiest citizens of all time.”

    He also argues for Fred McGriff. Should he be in the HOF over Murphy? I believe Murphy to be one of two back-to-back MVPs not in the HOF. I think the other is Roger Maris, unless he got in.

  22. 47
    brandon Says:

    Curt totally agree with Murphy in HOF over Andruw. McGriff too for that matter. They both dominated their era for more length of time. Andruw needs late surge to even be considered. In my opinion.
    Agreed get rid of Sherril and maybe Mather not sold on him either.

  23. 48
    Curt Says:

    The biggest things holding Murphy out are his career batting average, which is bad, and really was killed by his final 2 seasons, and the fact that the Braves were terrible when he played for them. Throw in the blatant anti-Atlanta bias held by most if not all of those in the sports media and you get a guy whose votes for the HOF have dropped dramatically, despite the fact that his numbers haven’t changed. If anything, he should get more recognition for doing it the right way, and for a lousy team.

    I am the biggest Dale Murphy homer of all time and will never shy away from that, but the disrespect thrown at his career is gauling. And toward Atlanta in a broader sense. If you played for the Falcons, Hawks or Atlanta Braves (pre-run), you aren’t likely to make the HOF. It took Dominique Wilkins TWO tries to get in the basketball HOF. He’s a top-10 scorer all time in the NBA. It’s a total joke.

    And rant for the day has completed. Until someone brings up how great fans are in Philly compared to Atlanta.

  24. 49
    BRAVEinNY (Matt) Says:

    Hey everyone, I created a friendly Fantasy Baseball League for everyone to take part in. No money will change hands, just bragging rights…
    The league is on yahoo. Here is the link to sign up:

    The League ID is 180643 and the Password is podcast.

    There is a 12 team max so sign up now.
    The live online draft is scheduled for Monday 3/28 at 8pm ET. You can always pre-rank if you can’t make it.


  25. 50
    BRAVEinNY (Matt) Says:

    By the way… How about Beachy winning the 5th starter spot

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