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Tony Tarasco to join Nationals as first base coach in 2013

The Washington Nationals have hired Tony Tarasco as the club's first base coach.


The Washington Nationals announced on Wednesday that Tony Tarasco will be joining Davey Johnson's staff as the first base coach for the 2013 season.

Former first base coach Trent Jewett will be moved to third base to replace Bo Porter, who recently accepted the open managerial position with the Houston Astros. The rest of Johnson's staff will consist of Jim Lett, Randy Knorr, Rick Eckstein and Steve McCatty.

Tarasco had previously worked as the minor league coordinator for the Nationals and has been with the club since 2006 when he joined as the hitting coach for the team's Rookie league affiliate in Vermont. In addition, he also played for Johnson in 1996 and 1997 as a member of the Baltimore Orioles.

Tarasco played nine seasons in the major leagues, spending time with the Atlanta Braves, Cincinnati Reds, Montreal Expos, New York Mets and New York Yankees. He finished his career with a .240 batting average in addition to 34 home runs and 118 RBI.

However, Tarasco is best remembered for being in right field in the eighth inning of Game 1 of the 1996 American League Championship Series, when umpire Rich Garcia ruled that Derek Jeter's fly ball was a home run. At the time, the home run -- which actually had been illegally touched by then-12-year-old Yankees fan Jeffrey Maier -- tied the game 4-4. The Yankees won the game, 5-4 in extra innings and went on to claim their 23rd World Series title.