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Chip Hale hired as Oakland A’s bench coach

Just because the regular season ends doesn’t mean the A’s news stops …

Chip Hale was announced as the team’s new bench coach Wednesday, replacing Joel Skinner. It’s a good local story. Hale, 46****, was born in San Jose and went to Campolindo High in Moraga, about a 20-minute drive from the Coliseum. He served as the New York Mets’ third base/infield coach for the past two seasons, and he was a finalist to be their manager in 2011 before Terry Collins was hired. Not surprisingly, he has a history with A’s manager Bob Melvin, having served as Melvin’s third base/infield coach with the Arizona Diamondbacks from 2007-09. Melvin had said he wanted to bring in coaches he was familiar with, and I’d say that’s especially true of a bench coach, who serves as the manager’s right-hand man and takes over the club if the skipper gets ejected. Hale received a two-year deal, by the way.

That leaves three spots on Melvin’s staff left to fill — hitting coach, pitching coach and bullpen coach (though Rick Rodriguez is a candidate to return in that last role).

Check out Chip Hale’s stats from his playing career if you like …