Baseball America conducted a survey of every major league manager, asking them to rank players in a bunch of different categories. You can see all of the results here, but as a shortcut, here is the list of Braves who caught the collective eye of the field bosses:
BEST FASTBALL: (2nd) Craig Kimbrel
BEST CURVEBALL: (3rd) Julio Teheran
BEST SLIDER: (1st) Craig Kimbrel
BEST RELIEVER: (1st) Craig Kimbrel
BEST PICKOFF MOVE: (2nd) Julio Teheran
BEST DEFENSIVE SHORTSTOP: (1st) Andrelton Simmons
BEST INFIELD ARM: (1st) Andrelton Simmons
BEST DEFENSIVE 1B: (3rd) Freddie Freeman
There are admittedly a few head-scratchers among the results here. Among them:
BEST CONTROL: (2nd) Clayton Kershaw. I have always thought of Kershaw’s fastball as a rudderless missile. It could literally show up anyway from the ankles to the eyeballs (and his scatter chart proves that). I would swear that he has no idea where it’s going. But it’s also got enough life on it that batters almost have to get started on a swing before they know where it’s going – and thus it’s effective. But “effective” does not equate to “control”. Does he walk few batters? Yes – currently #1 in the league. Does he has great control? I’d argue not like some other pitchers.
But Finally, There’s This
BEST MANAGER: (3rd) Fredi Gonzalez
Apparently, Fredi offered to fill out a few ballots on behalf of his fellow managers. Then again, the National League isn’t exactly having a banner year.