Braves decide on Larry Parrish as new hitting coach

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Mark Bowman of reports that the Braves will hire Larry Parrish as their new hitting coach, with an announcement expected later today.

Parrish, who hit 256 homers in 15 seasons as a big-league third baseman and made a pair of All-Star teams, had been the Triple-A manager in Detroit’s organization and also managed the Tigers for 186 games in 1998 and 1999.

Atlanta also interviewed Jim Presley for the hitting coach job, but he’s reportedly on the verge of joining Buck Showalter’s coaching staff in Baltimore. Terry Pendleton served as the Braves’ hitting coach this season, but was switched to first base coach with Fredi Gonzalez taking over for Bobby Cox as manager.

Clayton Kershaw completes spring training with a 0.00 ERA

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Clayton Kershaw had nothing left to prove when he exited the mound during his last Cactus League start on Friday. He finished camp with a 0.00 ERA, made all the more impressive after he extended his scoreless streak to 21 1/3 innings following 6 2/3 frames of one-hit ball against the Royals.

In six spring training starts this year, the Dodgers southpaw racked up 12 hits, four walks and 23 strikeouts. His velocity appeared to fluctuate between the high-80s and low-90s from start to start, but manager Dave Roberts told reporters that he expects Kershaw to get back up to the 93 m.p.h. range next week. Kershaw is tabbed for his eighth consecutive Opening Day start on Thursday.

The 30-year-old lefty is poised to enter his 11th season with the club in 2018. He went 18-4 in 27 starts last year and turned in a 2.31 ERA, 1.5 BB/9 and 10.4 SO/9 over 175 innings. He suffered his fair share of bumps and bruises along the way, including a lower back strain that required a five-week stay on the disabled list.

The Dodgers will open their season against the Giants on Thursday, March 29 at 7:08 PM ET. Given the sudden rash of injuries that hit the Giants’ rotation earlier today, Kershaw’s Opening Day opponent has not yet been announced.