Tacoma Rainiers manager Daren Brown gets the call to lead Mariners
Daren Brown, who has been a manager in the Mariners' minor-league system for 10 years, has developed relationships with many of the Mariners players he will manage the rest of this season.
Seattle Times staff reporter
New guys' bios
Manager Daren Brown
Age: 43, born June 13, 1967 in Holdenville, Okla.
Managing/coaching career: Has been with Mariners since 2001, managing San Bernardino (2001-02), Wisconsin (2003), Inland Empire (2004-05), San Antonio (2006) and Tacoma (2007-10).
Playing career: Pitched in Toronto Blue Jays' system, 1989-93. Pitched for independent Amarillo Dillas from 1994-99. Was also pitching coach with Amarillo from 1994-97 and manager from 1998-2000.
College: Southeastern Oklahoma State, 1994.
Family: Lives in Amarillo, Texas, with wife Cindy. Father, Paul Brown, pitched for the Philadelphia Phillies (1961-63, 1968).
Bench coach Roger Hansen
Age: 48, born Aug. 28, 1961 in Johnstown, Pa.
Managing/coaching career: Hansen has been the Mariners' minor-league catching coordinator for the past eight seasons. He began his coaching career with the Mariners in 1990 and was with the team through 1997, including the 1996 season as the manager of the Everett AquaSox. Roving catching instructor for the Orix Blue Wave in Japan from 1998-2001. He rejoined the Mariners in 2002, coaching in Everett, and serving as manager for the final 28 games. Since 2003 he has been the Mariners' minor-league catching coordinator.
Playing career: Hansen, a catcher, was a second-round pick by Kansas City in 1980. He spent 10 seasons in the minor leagues, including three years in Class AA and AAA in the Mariners' system.
Family: Lives in Stanwood with wife Lynn and two children.
Pitching coach Carl Willis
Age: 49, born Dec. 28, 1960.
Managing/coaching career: This was Willis' first season as the Mariners' minor-league pitching coordinator. Before that, he spent 13 years as a coach with the Cleveland Indians, including seven (2003-09) as the team's major-league pitching coach.
Playing career: Drafted by Detroit in the 23rd round of the 1983 draft. Pitched for Detroit (1984), Cincinnati (1984-86), the White Sox (1988) and Minnesota (1991-95). Finished with a 22-16 record, 4.25 earned-run average in 267 games, all but two in relief.
College: North Carolina-Wilmington.
Family: Lives in Durham, N.C., with wife Rachel and three children.
Sometime after 11 Sunday night, Daren Brown received a call to catch a plane to Seattle to become the Mariners' interim manager.
Forgive the 43-year-old if he doesn't remember the exact time of the call. After all, he had just finished watching his first-place Tacoma team lose 4-3 in Omaha, Neb., despite having hard-throwing right-hander Michael Pineda on the mound.
So while trying to process a Class AAA loss, Brown had to instead start sorting out his new position as Don Wakamatsu's replacement in Seattle.
Brown, who was in his fourth season as the Rainiers' skipper, caught a flight to Seattle at 6:30 a.m. Monday and met with reporters shortly after 4:15 p.m.
"As far as today, obviously it's been a quick turnaround for me, getting here and not having a whole lot of sleep in the last 24 hours, but we're trying to get the team prepared as best we can to play tonight and prepare to put together a nice 49 games that we've got to end the season and play (the best) baseball we can," he said.
After arriving at Safeco Field, Brown held a brief team meeting.
"These guys know where they are at and what needs to be done," he said. "I mainly wanted to share with them the same things I'm sharing with you. I don't think there's a magic formula or magic potion to come in here and flip a switch and it changes."
As he answered questions, he joked about his accent, speaking with the drawl of someone who makes his offseason home in Amarillo, Texas.
Over 10 years in the Mariners' organization, Brown has developed relationships with many players on the Seattle roster, which he expects to help ease the transition.
"He's a hard worker," third baseman Matt Tuiasosopo said. "Every day, whether it's early work or offense and defense, he's out there working. That's Brownie."
Before he became a manager, Brown was chosen in the 29th round of the 1989 amateur draft and spent five seasons pitching in the Blue Jays' system, including two years with Class AA Knoxville.
The son of former Philadelphia pitcher Paul Brown, Daren got his start as a manager with Amarillo in the independent Texas-Louisiana League and has also made stops in the California, Midwest, Texas and Pacific Coast leagues with the Mariners. He led the Rainiers to the PCL's North Division title in 2009.
"I feel like it is an opportunity, even coming in with the situation as it is," Brown said. "I think we are heading in the right direction. I know they took two out of three in the last series, so that's a plus going into tonight.
"I've been here 10 years with the Mariners organization and I care deeply about the Mariners organization. They've been really good to me. Anything I can do and, hopefully, get us to continue to head in the right direction I'm more than happy to do it."
When asked if he looked at this opportunity as an audition for the permanent job, Brown said he's more of a "day-to-day guy."
"I tend to look at it as: I'm going to do the best job I can tonight, then worry about tomorrow," he said. "If it turns out to be that way at the end of the seven weeks, then that's what it was."
Brown said Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik told him to manage the club the way he would any other team, and Brown wouldn't have it any other way.
"I am who I am, and that's kind of the way I plan to go about it," he said.
Mason Kelley: 206-464-8277 or firstname.lastname@example.org
When vice president of Sub Pop Records Megan Jasper isn't running things at the office, she's working in her garden at her West Seattle home where she and her husband Brian spend time relaxing.