With Dale Sveum leaving to take over the Chicago Cubs, the Brewers needed a new hitting coach. Monday, they hired Johnny Narron, the older brother of bench coach Jerry Narron.
We don’t know a whole lot about Johnny Narron, so it’s hard to write much about the move. We know he’s coming from Texas, where he was an Assistant Hitting Coach this season. We know he’s worked for the Rangers in other capacities as well, most notably as Josh Hamilton‘s travel partner and confidant as the outfielder tries to stay sober. We know he isn’t a stranger to the Brewers organization, as he served as the hitting coach for the Rookie League team in Helena in 2003 and 2006, and was the team’s manager in 2004. He was served as the hitting coach for both Brewers A-level clubs in 2005, starting the year with Brevard County before being re-assigned to West Virginia after the first month.
If you’re wondering if any of the current Brewers spent time with Narron in the past, Taylor Green was a Helena Brewer in 2006, while Ryan Braun and Mat Gamel had short stints for the West Virginia Power in 2005. It’s always hard to quantify the impact of a hitting coach, but at least there should be a little bit of familiarity, even if it’s just a sliver.
The past connections to the organization help explain the move, but it was still a bit of a surprise. It seemed like most people liked Sandy Guerrero to get the call to the big leagues after nearly 10 years of service in the Brewers’ minor league system. Guerrero was the hitting coach for Double A Huntsville from 2003 to 2008, and has spent the past three seasons with Triple A Nashville. Most would probably remember him as the Brewers’ designated Home Run Derby pitcher, though. Guerrero will work as the organization’s minor league hitting coordinator in 2012.