Coles, who was with the Brewers organization as a minor-league hitting coordinator and minor-league manager for four seasons, was hired Thursday to replace Johnny Narron.
Coles, 52, spent the 2014 season as the assistant hitting coach for the Detroit Tigers after managing Milwaukee’s Double-A affiliate in Huntsville for two seasons. He worked as the Brewers’ minor-league hitting coordinator in 2010-11.
Narron was fired after the Brewers slumped offensively after the All-Star break. Milwaukee hit just .239/.303/.375 after the break and averaged only 3.4 runs per game.
The Brewers surrendered a 6½-game lead in the National League Central and missed the postseason despite spending 159 days in first place.
Coles was a former first-round pick of the Mariners in 1980 and played 14 seasons in the major leagues. He batted .245 with 75 home runs in 957 games with the Mariners, Tigers, Pirates, Giants, Reds, Blue Jays, Cardinals and Rockies. He also played two seasons in Japan before retiring as a player in 1997.
Coles managed for two seasons in the Washington Nationals system in 2007 and 2008.
- Phil Watson