In a recent turn of events, it’s becoming increasingly apparent that the Arizona Diamondbacks must sever ties with their hitting coach, Joe Mather. The once-promising season that the Diamondbacks embarked upon has taken a nightmarish detour, leaving them perched at the bottom of the Major League Baseball rankings since June 20th.
While there’s a slew of factors contributing to their downfall, none loom larger than the staggering collapse of their offensive prowess.
In the early stages of the season, the Diamondbacks’ offense was a force to be reckoned with, combining youthful speed and formidable power to establish themselves as contenders. The month of April witnessed them boasting a remarkable team batting average of .271, propelling them to third place in the MLB rankings. By May, they secured the eighth spot in runs scored with an impressive 137, followed by a climb to third place in June, tallying 144 runs. However, as June drew to a close, the tides shifted dramatically, transforming their early dominance into a distant memory.
The landscape in July was fraught with struggles for the Diamondbacks, finding themselves languishing in 25th place for runs scored, managing a meager average of under four runs per game. Their standing in critical statistics was equally alarming: 27th in home runs, 25th in SLG, 24th in OPS, and 29th in RBIs. Consequently, July concluded on a sour note, with the team recording a disappointing 8-16 record.
The tale of woe persisted into August, marked by the absence of a single game where the Diamondbacks managed to score more than five runs since July 26th. Notably, even in the game where they scored seven runs, they still faced a crushing 11-7 defeat.
The narrative for this month is equally grim, with the Diamondbacks languishing at the bottom for runs scored, doubles, and batting average. With a ranking of 4th worst in batting average and 3rd worst in OPS, their slump shows no signs of abating, leaving them winless as of August 12th. So, how can the Diamondbacks combat this disheartening spiral?
The first critical step towards a revival involves parting ways with their hitting coach, Joe Mather. Surprisingly, this action remains conspicuously absent from the team’s agenda.
Mather’s coaching journey led him to the role of the Cincinnati Reds’ hitting coach for the 2020 and 2021 seasons. Returning to his roots, he joined the Diamondbacks in 2022. Unfortunately, his tenure in Arizona has been nothing short of underwhelming. While the situation might be more forgivable if the Diamondbacks were hopelessly out of playoff contention, this is far from reality. Despite their recent struggles and a slump since the All-Star break, they are just three games away from securing a coveted Wild Card spot.
In the midst of a seemingly adrift team, the truth remains that the schedule still presents 46 games, offering a window of opportunity for a dramatic playoff push.
In light of the current circumstances, relieving Joe Mather of his duties emerges as an imperative move, a pivotal jolt that could shatter the shackles of their ongoing slump. It’s time for the Diamondbacks to summon the courage to let go of the past and embrace the prospect of a renewed offensive firepower.