The Angels hired Ron Washington to be their manager this offseason. The sentiment from every member of the Braves has been the same; nobody can replace Ron Washington. He was instrumental in the Braves’ success since joining the organization, helping them to six straight NL East titles and a World Series in 2021. Washington’s impact with the younger players was especially impactful, particularly the infielders, whom he spent tireless hours working with throughout the entire year.
One of the players Washington helped grow into the player he is today is Ozzie Albies. It might surprise some people but Albies is the elder statesman of the Braves now, even at just 26-years-old. He came into the league in 2017, the same year Washington became Atlanta’s third base coach, and the two developed an unbreakable bond.
“When I saw the news, I was sad actually, because he’s like a dad to me,” Albies said of Washington in an interview with Bally Sports while sitting courtside at the Atlanta Hawks game. “For the rest of the team, he treats everybody the same, and he brings it all in with mentality and prepares you for every situation. It’s a big loss for Atlanta for sure. All I can tell him is good luck and the best in Anaheim.”
Not having Washington around the clubhouse will be weird for everyone, but especially players like Ozzie Albies who have spent a large chunk of their professional lives with him.
In the interview, Albies was also asked about one of his best friends, Ronald Acuna Jr, taking home his first MVP award.
“He’s going to laugh at this one,” Albies said of Acuna. “He feels like my son, but he’s my brother. I love him a lot, and I’m really happy that he got the award.”
"𝖧𝖾'𝗌 𝗀𝗈𝗂𝗇𝗀 𝗍𝗈 𝗅𝖺𝗎𝗀𝗁 𝖺𝗍 𝗍𝗁𝗂𝗌 𝗈𝗇𝖾: 𝖧𝖾 𝖿𝖾𝖾𝗅𝗌 𝗅𝗂𝗄𝖾 𝗆𝗒 𝗌𝗈𝗇, 𝖻𝗎𝗍 𝗁𝖾'𝗌 𝗆𝗒 𝖻𝗋𝗈𝗍𝗁𝖾𝗋. 𝖨 𝗅𝗈𝗏𝖾 𝗁𝗂𝗆 𝖺 𝗅𝗈𝗍, 𝖺𝗇𝖽 𝖨'𝗆 𝗋𝖾𝖺𝗅𝗅𝗒 𝗁𝖺𝗉𝗉𝗒 𝗍𝗁𝖺𝗍 𝗁𝖾 𝗀𝗈𝗍 𝗍𝗁𝖾 𝖺𝗐𝖺𝗋𝖽."
— Bally Sports: Hawks (@HawksOnBally) November 18, 2023
Photographer: Rich von Biberstein/Icon Sportswire