Tag:Jerry Narron
Posted on: February 8, 2012 12:50 am
Edited on: February 8, 2012 10:23 am

Rangers hire assistant for Josh Hamilton

Josh Hamilton

Posted by Eye on Baseball

First off, the Rangers don't want Shayne Kelley to be called Josh Hamilton's "accountability coach" -- Kelley is a "Major League staff assistant" with more or less one player to coach.

The Rangers hired the former Royals minor-league strength assistant on Tuesday, but general manager Jon Daniels made sure to dismiss the term previously applied to Johnny Narron and, briefly, Michael Dean Chadwick, Hamilton's father-in-law.

"I don't know where that [term] came from … Josh is accountable for himself," Daniels told MLB.com. "Our aim is to support him and put him in a position to succeed. If you hire an interpreter for somebody, the guy is still responsible for what he says. Josh is still accountable for himself."

Josh Hamilton
Narron, the brother of Brewers bench coach Jerry Narron, had been by Hamilton's side since 2007, when Hamilton joined the Reds' organization -- and stayed with him even after his brother, Jerry, was fired as the team's manager. When Hamilton was traded to Texas, Narron went too. However, Narron left his job with the Rangers in November to become the Brewers hitting coach. Chadwick was hired in January, but backed out of the position less than two weeks later.

While without an aide or whatever else it is they want to call it, Hamilton had a relapse with alcohol. Hamilton is an admitted drug and alcohol addict. After his relapse became public, Hamilton met with doctors from Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Kelley was also along for the meeting, according to the newspaper. MLB hasn't decided if Hamilton will face disciplinary action from the relapse, which could be deemed a violation of his previous terms of reinstatement from previous suspensions. Daniels said he expected any such discipline "unlikely."

Kelley spent last season as a high school baseball coach, but has served as an assistant at Samford and Jacksonville State in Alabama. He was an assistant coach and team chaplain for the University of Alabama from 1996-99 and then served in Kansas City's minor-league system as a strength and conditioning coach for three years.

Hamilton had no previous relationship with Kelley, who came recommended by Hamilton's agent, Michael Moye, and Rangers vice-president Chuck Morgan, whose son was at Alabama with Kelley. Daniels said Kelley will have duties with the rest of the team in addition to Hamilton.

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Posted on: November 28, 2011 5:00 pm
Edited on: November 28, 2011 5:03 pm

Josh Hamilton loses his 'handler'

By Matt Snyder

The Milwaukee Brewers lost their hitting coach when Dale Sveum was hired as the Cubs new manager. Monday, the Brewers filled the hole by hiring Johnny Narron. It unites him with his older brother Jerry, who is the Brewers bench coach. Still, that's not really the story here.

Johnny Narron has been with Rangers star Josh Hamilton for a long time. Hamilton has known Narron since he was nine years old and playing on a youth basketball team with Narron's son. Once becoming a professional baseball player, Hamilton had the well-documented struggles with addiction and has since cleaned himself up. And Narron's been right with him every step of the way.

When Hamilton finally emerged on the 2007 Reds, Narron was considered Hamilton's "handler" by many and never left his side. His technical title was video and administrative coach. When Hamilton was shipped to the Rangers via trade the following offseason, Narron went to Texas as well, getting the title of assistant hitting coach. But he was basically Hamilton's shadow. When Hamilton was answering questions at All-Star Game media day about Rangers fan Shannon Stone's death, for example, Narron was sitting right next to him.

"I'm with him and I'm for him 24 hours a day," Narron said (MLB.com). "I've been very blessed to be a part of this whole trip. I'm able to be there and support a young man who has turned his life over to God. I love Josh. I know that Josh loves me. We respect each other. It's a relationship that we both believe was meant to be."

Hamilton obviously has a strong support system, but losing Narron might test his mettle a bit. Obviously they won't stop communicating, but that's not the same as being with someone all day every day during the grueling 162-game baseball season.

"We've been in touch with Josh -- before and after the hiring -- and will sit down to discuss the best way to move forward," Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said. "We're confident we will continue to support Josh and all of our players as needed. In anticipation of losing Johnny, we had some discussion about this, but will be in better position to address that specifically once we've all put our heads together."

Hopefully everything works out.

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