The Braves got great news on Saturday afternoon, when pitching coach Roger McDowell turned down the Phillies to remain in Atlanta. The Braves offered all their assistant coaches one-year deals last week; all signed on except McDowell. That fueled speculation that McDowell would be seeking a multi-year deal, quite possibly with another team.
Fortunately for Braves fans, the organization ponied up the multi-year deal McDowell had been seeking. Financial terms were not immediately available, but it's probably safe to say he got a raise from his roughly $200,000 2013 salary. The Phillies, who had been courting McDowell, paid pitching coach Rich Dubee $360,000 for his work in 2013, so they were obviously willing to give McDowell a raise had he come on board with them.
As Ben opined before, keeping McDowell in the fold was key for Atlanta. Under his watch, the Braves have consistently seen their pitchers (both starting and relief) exceed outside expectations. It's impossible, of course, to say how much of that improvement is solely on McDowell, but his influence is obviously meaningful.
This wasn't the first time this year that the Braves' division foes had tried to poach someone from the coaching staff. Jim Salisbury of CSN Philidelphia reported that Philly had made Doug Dascenzo an offer to join their big league staff; Atlanta responded by promoting Dascenzo to third base coach last month.