The Oakland A's announced on Monday that 2008 Sacramento manager Todd Steverson and former Milwaukee Brewers hitting coach Jim Skaalen will be rounding out A's manager Bob Geren's coaching staff.
Steverson will take on the first base coaching position with the A's. Tye Waller, the A's first base coach for much of last season, will serve as the A's new bench coach.
Steverson joins the A's after spending four seasons managing in the minor league system. He was the Stockton Ports' first skipper as an Oakland A's affiliate and he managed the A's High-A squad in 2005 and 2006. In 2007, he was promoted to Double-A Midland, where he spent one season.
Last year was Steverson's first as a Triple-A manager. Steverson inherited a Sacramento squad that had won the PCL and Triple-A championships in 2007. Although he did it with a completely different squad, Steverson led the River Cats' to another PCL and Triple-A title in 2008.
Before taking the Stockton position, Steverson was a hitting coach with short-season Vancouver in 2004. He spent the five seasons before that coaching in the St. Louis Cardinals organization, where he worked with a young Albert Pujols, among others. Steverson played in 31 major league games for Detroit and San Diego in the mid-1990s.
Over the years, OaklandClubhouse.com has spoken to Steverson about his thoughts on the game and one certain players. To view those stories, please click here. No announcement has been made on who will replace Steverson in Sacramento.
Skaalen comes to the A's as the team's hitting coach after spending the past two seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers in the same capacity. Like Steverson, Skaalen has deep experience in player development. He coached in the minor leagues from 1981 through 1989 and then became the Texas Rangers' minor league hitting instructor in 1990. He has also served as a coordinator of minor league instruction for the Seattle Mariners, the director of player development for the San Diego Padres and the minor league hitting coordinator for the Brewers.
Over his two seasons on the Milwaukee staff, Skaalen worked with a number of good, young hitters, including Prince Fielder, Corey Hart, J.J. Hardy and Ryan Braun. Skaalen will be inheriting an Oakland offense that was ranked near the bottom in baseball in 2008.
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