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Wednesday, December 21, 2011
Source: Bill Buckner to coach Class A

ESPNChicago.com

Ending speculation that he could be hired to join the Red Sox coaching staff, former Boston first baseman Bill Buckner will join the Chicago Cubs' Class A affiliate Boise Hawks as their hitting coach, a source told ESPN's Jeremy Schaap.

Buckner makes his home in Boise, Idaho.

New Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine wanted to add Buckner to his coaching staff, and Buckner was open to the idea, a source told ESPNBoston.com's Gordon Edes, but the team's front office was resistant to it.

Valentine and Buckner have been friends since 1968, the year they both were drafted by the Dodgers -- Valentine in the first round, Buckner in the second.

Buckner just finished his first season as manager of the independent-league Brockton Rox, who finished 51-42 and qualified for the Can-Am League playoffs on the season's final day. The Rox were eliminated in the semifinals.

Buckner has coached in the big leagues; his last job was as hitting coach with the White Sox in 1996 and '97.

For his playing career, Buckner played 22 seasons, including three full with the Red Sox and parts of two more in Boston, and almost eight seasons for the Cubs from 1977 to 1984. He won a batting title in 1980.

Information from ESPNBoston.com's Gordon Edes was used in this report.