I’ve never been one who believed Terry Pendleton was the problem. As the saying goes, he can’t step in and hit for his guys. (It might be better if he could.) But then you look at these batting averages, and even a Pendleton admirer must cringe.
Take away Martin Prado — who is, it must be stipulated, second in the National League in hitting at .406 — and the totality of the Braves’ regular lineup isn’t hitting Prince Fielder’s weight. Which is incredible.
The Braves rank last in the league in hitting at .228. (And remember, that’s with Prado doing a Ted Williams.) They were no-hit by Ubaldo Jimenez. They were shut out by Roy Halladay. They were one out from being blanked on a night Kyle Kendrick started for the Phillies. They were shut out over five innings by Mike Pelfrey on Sunday.
They didn’t score an earned run in three games against a Philadelphia starting pitcher. They scored three runs in 23 innings against the Mets. They’re in last place in the NL East, behind even the Washington Nationals. Yow.
And now we check another set of numbers, these belonging to players who were Braves in 2009 but who aren’t today:
Again, I’m not one who usually blames the hitting coach when big-leaguers don’t hit. But it does seem the guys who aren’t Braves are hitting in a way the Braves aren’t. You tell me: What does that say?