Braves name Kranitz pitching coach

December 4th, 2018

ATLANTA -- The Braves officially named Rick Kranitz as their new pitching coach on Thursday.

"I'm thrilled to add Rick to our coaching staff," Braves manager Brian Snitker said. "Right from the start of the interview process, Rick stood out with his knowledge, credentials and experience. He has had a lot of success developing young talent, and he is going to have a big impact getting the most out of all of our pitchers."

Kranitz's one-season tenure as Philadelphia's pitching coach ended last month, when the Phillies removed him and gave the role to assistant pitching coach Chris Young. Young's promotion came as a result of the Braves and at least one other team requesting permission to speak to Kranitz about their pitching coach vacancy.

When general manager Alex Anthopoulos dismissed Chuck Hernandez as his pitching coach less than a week after Atlanta was eliminated from the postseason, he said he would conduct a long thorough search that may stretch into December. The process might not have played out exactly how it was envisioned, but Kranitz certainly shouldn't be viewed as a fallback option.

The Phillies ranked 11th among National League teams with a 4.14 ERA this season. But given they possessed a historically leaky defense, it's better to look at the fact they ranked second in the NL with a 3.79 Fielding Independent Pitching mark.

Kranitz inherits a starting rotation that currently projects to include Mike Foltynewicz, , and . The Braves are searching for another top-flight starter and a closer to place at the back end of a deep and young bullpen that includes some health concerns.

While serving one-season stints as Philadelphia's bullpen coach, assistant pitching coach and pitching coach over the past three years, Kranitz influenced the development of , who finished third in this year's NL Cy Young Award balloting.

Kranitz gained his first Major League job as a pitching coach with the Marlins in 2006. His rotation that season included the 22-year-old versions of Josh Johnson and , who rejuvenated his career in Atlanta this past season. The 60-year-old Arizona native also served as a pitching coach for the Orioles (2008-10) and Brewers (2011-15).