CLEVELAND, Ohio — The Indians caught a break last week when the Texas Rangers didn’t hire Ruben Niebla as their big-league pitching coach. They were not so fortunate Monday.
Milwaukee hired Steve Karsay as its big-league bullpen coach. Karsay just finished his third season at the pitching coach at Class AAA Columbus and his seventh as a coach in the organization. Karsay pitched for the Indians from 1998 to 2001 before being traded to Atlanta for John Rocker.
Karsay, before his three-year stay at Columbus, was the pitching coach for Tribe affiliates in the Arizona Rookie League, Class A Lake County and Class A Carolina. He played a role in the development of Mike Clevinger and Shane Bieber, who filled out the backend of the rotation last season.
The Blue Jays selected Karsay out of high school in the first round of the 1990 draft. He played in the big leagues with Oakland, Atlanta, the Indians, Yankees, Texas an Oakland. He went 15-14 with a 3.23 ERA and 22 saves for the Indians from 1998 through 2001. Overall, he pitched for 11 years in the big leagues.
Milwaukee advanced to Game 7 of the NLCS this year before losing to the Dodgers. In announcing the hiring of Karsay, 46, they also announced the promotion of Chris Hook to pitching coach from minor league pitching coordinator.
Niebla, the Indians minor league pitching coordinator, was a finalist for the pitching coach’s job in Texas. He was told last week that he didn’t get it. In fact, the job went to Julio Rangel, who spent 11 of the last 12 years in the Indians minor league system.