MILWAUKEE -- Fan favorite Nyjer Morgan is the "We Energies High-Energy Player of the Year," the Brewers and We Energies announced before Friday's game against the Marlins.
Morgan, whose on-field performance and off-field personality have made him incredibly popular in his first year with the Brewers, received 61 percent of the vote.
Voted on by the fans, media and We Energies staff, the "We Energies High-Energy Player of the Year" award is given each year to the player who best personifies the characteristics of hard work and an aggressive approach to playing the game.
Second baseman Rickie Weeks won the award in 2010, and Morgan also joins previous winners Craig Counsell (2009), Ryan Braun (2008), Prince Fielder (2007) and Bill Hall (2006).
Guerrero replaces Money as Sounds skipper
MILWAUKEE -- Brewers general manager Doug Melvin said Thursday the club accommodated a request from Don Money in moving the former All-Star from his Triple-A Nashville manager role to a player development special instructor.
Money was interested in cutting down on the travel he had been doing as the Sounds manager in the Pacific Coast League, and had approached assistant general manager Gord Ash about making a change, Melvin said.
"It's something that Don wanted. ... He talked to Gord about it back in August," Melvin said. "[Money]'s going to be hitting instructor in Helena, and then be in camp and Minor League camp and available to help around wherever we need him."
The Brewers announced the move Thursday along with the club's player development staffs at Triple-A Nashville and Double-A Huntsville, each of which will feature a new manager for the 2012 season.
Mike Guerrero was named Sounds manager after spending two years in the same capacity with the Stars. Joining Guerrero in Nashville will be Al LeBoeuf, who will serve as a coach after recently completing his second season as a coach for the Stars. The Brewers will announce the Triple-A pitching coach at a later date.
Before the changes were announced, Guerrero had already joined the Brewers on the road this week.
"Mike, he's been with us a lot of years," Melvin said of Guerrero, who recently completed his 16th season in the Brewers organization.
With Guerrero moving up, the new Stars manager will be Darnell Coles, the former Minor League hitting coordinator for the Brewers. John Curtis will remain in Huntsville as the pitching coach for the Stars, and Dwayne Hosey will be a coach on the staff after spending the last two years with Class A Brevard County.
Replacing Coles will be Sandy Guerrero, who spent the previous three seasons at Nashville. The rest of the Brewers' roving instructors will remain the same next season with Charlie Green as field coordinator and catching instructor, Lee Tunnell as pitching coordinator, outfield and baserunning instructor Reggie Williams and Bob Miscik, infield instructor.
"Sometimes things can get stale when you're in one place for too long," Melvin said. "You look for new challenges and something new, and Sandy's very good. This gives him the chance to use his expertise with everybody in the organization."
Melvin won't let contract be a distraction
MILWAUKEE -- One of Brewers general manager Doug Melvin's best friends earned some job security on Friday, when the Reds signed GM Walt Jocketty to a three-year contract extension through 2014. If Melvin gets a similar vote of confidence, it would not come until after the season.Melvin, 59, whose trades for pitchers Zack Greinke and Shaun Marcum have helped vault the Brewers to the top of the National League Central, already has a contract through 2012. "Doug, with everything going on with the team, doesn't want any distractions," principal owner Mark Attanasio said. "After the season, I'm sure, it's something we could talk about. Obviously, we are very happy with Doug. We have one of the three best records in baseball." Jocketty was the second NL Central GM to earn an extension this month, joining Pittsburgh's Neal Huntington. The difference is distinct; both Jocketty and Huntington had contracts set to expire after this season, while Melvin's runs through 2012. He has been Brewers GM since September 2002.
Manager Ron Roenicke said left-hander Randy Wolf played catch on Friday afternoon and was "still a little tight," but would make his next start on schedule. Wolf was struck near the left wrist while trying to bunt a Matt Garza pitch in Wednesday's loss to the Cubs. Second baseman Rickie Weeks spoke via telephone Thursday night with his kid brother, Jemile, who belted his first career home run in the A's win over the Rangers. It took Jemile 90 games to get on the board, 69 more than Rickie. "He's kind of like me," said Rickie Weeks, who needed only 21 games to notch his first big league homer, in 2006. "He hit it, he's happy about it and then he moved on." The Brewers have two scouts following each of their potential postseason opponents, including both National League and American League teams. The team also relies on scouting reports gathered via an in-house video system at Miller Park. Melvin is a big movie buff and was looking forward to seeing "Moneyball," the story of A's general manager Billy Beane's use of statistical analysis to drive baseball decisions. "Billy is a bright guy, and I have a lot of respect for Billy and what he did back then," Melvin said. "When Billy started doing something different, people listened, because they were having success at the time." But there must be a mix between statistics and traditional scouting, Melvin believes. He is a big believer in ballpark effects. But he does not think that mainstream defensive metrics paint an accurate picture, and he believes the unbalanced schedules skew the numbers. The Brewers, for example, played 34 games this season against the Cardinals and Reds, the top two offenses in the National League. "There have been a couple of trade proposals over the last two years that, had I made based on the numbers, we wouldn't be up here today having a chance to clinch," Melvin said. "There are no apples to apples in our game." Melvin joked that, "My version of Moneyball is, I go to Mark [Attanasio, the team's principal owner] and I say, 'How much money do I have?' Then I go to work." If Hollywood ever makes a movie about the Brewers, who would play Melvin? He suggested Sam Elliot, the mustachioed cowboy who sucked down sarsaparilla in "The Big Lebowski."
Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brew Beat, and follow him on Twitter at @AdamMcCalvy. Jordan Schelling is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.