The Diamondbacks have hired former Athletics manager Chip Hale as their next manager, Bob Nightengale of USA Today first reported Monday morning. Hale will head to Arizona on a two-year deal, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports.
The 49-year-old Hale has been considered as a possible managerial candidate for the Mets and Mariners in recent years, as he lost out on the job to Terry Collins and Lloyd McClendon, respectively. He was also considered a candidate to become the Twins manager for next season after they fired Ron Gardenhire, but he cancelled the interview in order to "see through this chance" with the Diamondbacks, according to Nick Piercoro of the Arizona Republic.
Hale has spent a lot of time in Arizona during his life. He attended the University of Arizona, where he was drafted by the Minnesota Twins in the 17th round of the 1987 MLB Draft. In parts of seven seasons in the major leagues, Hale hit a lifetime .277/.346/.363 with seven homers and 78 runs driven in.
Hale has plenty of coaching experience. His first job came in the Diamondbacks organization as a minor league manager. For the 2006 season, Hale served as the third base coach in the Diamondbacks organization under then-manager Bob Melvin. He has also worked as the Mets third base coach and, for the past three seasons, the bench coach of the Athletics, under Melvin.
Over the weekend, the Diamondbacks had narrowed their manager search to four candidates - Jim Tracy, Phil Nevin, Sandy Alomar Jr., and Hale, as Nightengale reported. The Diamondbacks look to turn around a relatively disappointing season in which they finished last in the National League West with a 64-98 record. Many, including myself, thought they could be in contention for the postseason. Hale will have his work cut out in 2015 to be able to achieve that goal.