Hall of Famer John Smoltz knows what it takes to reaches the highest pinnacle in sports. He spoke about his journey through baseball last Friday at the Texas High School Baseball Coaches Association.
Smoltz reminisced about coaches that helped him grow into one of the greatest pitchers the game has ever seen. He also talked about the state of the sport and the role analytics do and should play in evaluation.
The assembled coaches most enjoyed Smoltz's thoughts on his most famous manager, fellow Hall of Famer Bobby Cox.
“He was one of the greatest coaches in history,” Smoltz said. “He gave us confidence at times when we didn’t have it. He made us men. I asked him once why he took all the bullets for us. He said he has to as our leader. I turned down a lot of money to keep playing for him.”
Smoltz was as an eight-time All-Star who spent time as a dominant starter and closer. He won 213 games and collected 154 saves during his career.
Smoltz helped the Atlanta Braves win the 1995 World Series and the 1996 National League Cy Young Award. He was one of the most successful postseason pitchers ever, posting a 15-4 record and 2.67 ERA in the playoffs.
Smoltz has his number retired by the Braves and is a member of the Baseball Hall of Famer. He currently serves as Fox's lead baseball analyst.
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