“Matt possesses a true understanding of and passion for hitting,” Preller said. “Throughout his playing career, he was a student of the game. In this process, we looked for teachers who could make an immediate impact with our players, and Matt brings invaluable knowledge and experience both as a coach and as a 19-year Major League veteran.”
“We’re thrilled to have Matt join our coaching staff,” said Padres manager Andy Green. “He did a tremendous job with the Phillies’ young players last season and brings a wealth of hitting knowledge to our ball club.”
Stairs, 49, spent the 2017 season as the hitting coach for the Philadelphia Phillies, which was his first professional coaching position. He played parts of 19 seasons in the major leagues with 12 different franchises, including the Padres in 2010.
Widely known for his game-winning, pinch-hit two-run homer off Jonathan Broxton in Game 4 of the 2008 NLCS at Dodger Stadium, Stairs is MLB’s all-time leader in pinch home runs (23) and ranks second in MLB history in home runs by a Canadian-born player (265), trailing only Larry Walker (383).
He was originally signed by the Montreal Expos as an amateur free agent in 1989 and batted .262 with 294 doubles, 13 triples, 265 home runs, 899 RBI, 717 walks and 770 runs in 1,895 career Major League games between the Expos (1992-93), Boston Red Sox (1995), Oakland Athletics (1996-2000), Chicago Cubs (2001), Milwaukee Brewers (2002), Pittsburgh Pirates (2003), Kansas City Royals (2004-2006), Texas Rangers (2006), Detroit Tigers (2006), Toronto Blue Jays (2007-08), Phillies (2008-09), Padres (2010) and Washington Nationals (2011).
Following his playing career, Stairs was an in-studio analyst for the New England Sports Network (NESN) and co-hosted programming on MLB Network Radio on Sirius/XM. He also spent three seasons (2014-16) with CSN Philly as a color analyst for Phillies TV broadcasts.