Brewers add Subero, Lane to coaching staff

Brewers add Subero, Lane to coaching staff

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Brewers filled out their Major League coaching staff Monday with a promotion and an intriguing new hire when they named Carlos Subero first-base coach and former big league hitter-turned-pitcher Jason Lane to another opening.

Subero, who formerly served as the manager at Double-A Biloxi, has never played or coached in the Major Leagues, aside from a brief callup in September. He will oversee Brewers infielders in addition to his in-game duties at first base. Lane, however, is in the unique position of having appeared in the big leagues as both as a hitter and a pitcher. His official title is simply "Major League coach," but the position essentially translates to assistant hitting coach.

"Everybody in the game has a dream to be in the big leagues," said Lane, who turns 38 later this month. "If I can't be there as player, I can be there to help guys."

Lane played the outfield for parts of seven Major League seasons and was the regular right fielder for the World Series-bound Astros in 2005. But he bounced between organized and independent baseball from 2007-11 before attempting a revival as a left-handed pitcher, and, in June 2014, he made it back to the Majors for the first time in nearly seven years. Lane surrendered one run in 10 1/3 innings over three appearances with the Padres.

He pitched again in 2015 at Triple-A El Paso, which was managed at the start of the season by Pat Murphy, who went on to serve as interim manager of the Padres before the Brewers hired him in October. Murphy was Brewers manager Craig Counsell's college coach at Notre Dame.

But Lane never received a call to San Diego, and when there weren't any offers this winter to continue pitching, Lane turned his focus to coaching.

"I wasn't just playing to play in Triple-A," Lane said. "I wanted to be considered an option or a piece for a Major League team, even if I had to start in Triple-A. It seemed as I got older it was tougher to get those opportunities. When you have an offer like this, to go right into the big leagues as a coach, [it is difficult to pass up]."

Subero, meanwhile, took a more traditional path to his first Major League coaching opportunity. A veteran of managing and coaching in the Minor Leagues as well as Venezuela, Subero joined Milwaukee's organization prior to last season and led a prospect-rich Biloxi team that was homeless for the first two months of the season awaiting a newly constructed stadium. The team thrived behind top prospect Orlando Arcia and co-aces Jorge Lopez and Tyler Wagner, starting the season 43-25 and winning a first-half division title. The team played all the way to the Southern League Championship Series.

"It means a lot, especially after 25 years of grinding," Subero said. "Twelve years of winter ball and 17 years of player development, sometimes you wonder. There's many qualified people in this game that leave the game without having this opportunity. I definitely feel good about all the time I have invested in accumulating experience. I'm excited about it."

Subero is fluent in Spanish, like the man he replaces, Mike Guerrero, who was among the coaches dismissed in October. Subero had three separate telephone interviews last week, first with general manager David Stearns on Monday, then assistant GM Matt Arnold on Wednesday and Counsell on Thursday. In a lengthy chat with Counsell, the two talk in broad terms about baseball philosophy, Subero said.

On Friday, he was offered the job.

Besides Murphy, Subero and Lane, the Brewers' coaching staff includes hitting coach Darnell Coles, pitching coach Derek Johnson, bullpen coach Lee Tunnell and third-base coach Ed Sedar.

Adam McCalvy is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter @AdamMcCalvy, like him on Facebook and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.