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Milwaukee to keep coaching staff intact for 2013

MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers' coaching staff will return intact for 2013, manager Ron Roenicke announced on Tuesday.

The staff consists of bench coach Jerry Narron, hitting coach Johnny Narron, pitching coach Rick Kranitz, first-base coach Garth Iorg and third-base coach Ed Sedar, all who began the season with the Brewers, and bullpen coach Lee Tunnell, a midseason "callup" who joined the staff after Stan Kyles was dismissed in July.

"Everybody is coming back," said Roencike, who joked that he'll return, too. "This is really a good staff."

The staff endured its share of criticism earlier in the season, beginning with Johnny Narron, who replaced former hitting coach Dale Sveum after Sveum was hired to manage the Cubs.

But Brewers hitters entered Tuesday leading the National League with 766 runs scored and 201 home runs, and were second to the high-altitude Rockies with a .764 OPS.

"We struggled a lot last year at times, and I think the way we started off and you have a new hitting coach in, you're saying, 'Well, do guys just not mesh with the new guy, or what's the case?'" Roenicke said. "I'm not going to say that those things didn't enter my mind at the time, too, because you always wonder what's going to happen with guys, and certain personalities.

"Once we started hitting and guys got used to Johnny and understood him, we took off, offensively."

Roenicke lauded the work by Kranitz and Tunnell to help turn around the Brewers' bullpen. Tunnell previously served as the Brewers' roving Minor League pitching instructor, experience that could come in handy next season given the number of young arms expected to populate the roster.

Roenicke's own contractual status was settled back in May, when the team extended its commitment through 2014 and added a club option for '15.