Rice Lake’s Lucas joins Crew’s MiLB coaching ranks

Another cheesehead is joining manager Matt Erickson’s staff at Class A Wisconsin, the Brewers made official Tuesday while finalizing their Minor League coaching assignments.

Gary Lucas, a former Major League reliever who lives in Rice Lake, Wis., was named the Timber Rattlers pitching coach under Appleton native Erickson, confirming a report in the Appleton Post-Crescent last month. Lucas is coming off 10 seasons as a coach in the Minnesota Twins’ farm system.

Among his students over the years was current Brewers right-hander Matt Garza.

“No matter what generation you are, the game never changes for me,” Lucas told the St. Paul Pioneer Press for a 2012 story. “This game is difficult and it requires a lot of patience in your teaching. They might be kids from a different era but they still have a love for the game, have a passion for the game that we had.

“How can I bring that passion out of them? How can I make them feel that someone is in their corner and tweak them up when they’re going good and be somebody they can lean on when they’re going bad?”

Erickson is returning for his fifth season as manager at Wisconsin but has three new staff members working under him. In addition to Lucas, the Brewers named Liu Rodriguez as a coach and Steve Timmers as strength and conditioning specialist. Another coach, Chuckie Caufield, and athletic trainer Jeff Paxson are holdovers from last season.

Most of the Brewers’ other coaching staffs remained unchanged, including at the Triple-A and Double-A levels, where Milwaukee has new affiliates in Colorado Springs and Biloxi. The coaching staffs at rookie-level Helena and Arizona also remained the same.

Here are the full assignments at the other affiliates:

Colorado Springs Sky Sox (Triple-A): Manager Rick Sweet, pitching coach Fred Dabney, coach Bob Skube, athletic trainer Aaron Hoback and strength and conditioning specialist Andrew Emmick.

Biloxi Shuckers (Double-A): Manager Carlos Subero, pitching coach Chris Hook, coach Sandy Guerrero, athletic trainer Steve Parera, strength and conditioning specialist Nate Dine.

Brevard County Manatees (Class A Advanced): Manager Joe Ayrault, pitching coach David Chavarria, coach Ned Yost IV, coach Reggie Williams, athletic trainer Tommy Craig, strength and conditioning specialist Jonah Mergen.

Helena Brewers (rookie): Manager Tony Diggs, pitching coach Rolando Valles, coach Jason Dubois, athletic trainer Luke Greene, strength and conditioning specialist Tim Gifford.

Arizona Brewers (rookie): Manager Nestor Corredor, pitching coach Steve Cline, coach Al LeBoeuf, athletic trainer Greg Barajas.

Dominican Summer League Brewers: Manager Jose Pena, pitching coaches Geraldo Obispo and Jose Ramos, coaches Luis De Los Santos, Victor Estevez and Joan Abreu, athletic trainer Alex Mena and strength and conditioning specialist Alistair Matthews.

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