The Red Sox have hired Jerry Narron to serve as the club’s bench coach under interim manager Ron Roenicke. The club made the move official following Saturday’s 4-3 win over the Tampa Bay Rays.
Narron, 64, had served as bench coach for the Diamondbacks under old friend Torey Lovullo for the last three seasons, but left the organization at the conclusion of the 2019 campaign after Arizona decided to promote Luis Urueta to the position.
If Narron’s name sounds familiar, that’s because he had previously been the Red Sox’ bench coach going way back to 2003, when Grady Little was at the helm in Boston.
It was a brief stint, but Narron said that he “had a great year here and enjoyed it.”
Prior to that, the North Carolina native managed the Texas Rangers from May 2001 until the conclusion of the 2002 season, where he posted a record of 134-162.
After spending the 2003 campaign with the Sox, Narron joined the Reds’ coaching staff as bench coach under then-manager Dave Miley before being named interim manager in June 2005.
That ‘interim’ tag was eventually removed, but Narron was fired by the Reds a little more than two years after his initial promotion. He went 157-179 while in charge in Cincinnati.
From there, Narron returned to the Rangers in 2008 to work as a front office consultant before being hired as the Brewers’ bench coach prior to the start of the 2011 season.
The manager who hired him at the time? Ron Roenicke.
Narron served as bench coach under Roenicke throughout his entire tenure as manager in Milwaukee and remained with the club even after Roenicke was fired midway through the 2015 season.
“He’s got a great baseball mind.” Roenicke said of Narron when speaking to reporters Saturday. “He’s a lot smarter than I am which helps me to go to him when I want to. All of that helps make things go smoother here.”
Upon being named interim manager earlier in the month, Roenicke was left without a bench coach, the role he had previously held under Alex Cora.
There was plenty of speculation that Roenicke, along with chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom and general manager Brian O’Halloran, were going to go with an internal candidate for the position. But, going with someone who is familiar with Roenicke and his style isn’t too bad, either.
“I wouldn’t do it just because [Narron’s] familiar with me,” said Roenicke. “I’d do it because he’s really good.”
Narron should also be somewhat familiar with at least one player on the Sox’ 40-man roster in J.D. Martinez, who spent the latter half of the 2017 campaign with the Diamondbacks after coming over in a July trade from the Tigers that year.
We should see Narron on the bench for the first time on Sunday afternoon, when the Red Sox take on the Orioles in Sarasota.