Matt Stairs retires from MLB
Matt Stairs, New Brunswick's biggest baseball star, is ready to retire after almost two decades playing in Major League Baseball.
Stairs, 43, hasn't made the official announcement yet but he told CBC News in an interview on Wednesday that his playing days are now done.
"I'm not sad. I had a great career, a long career," Stairs said.
"And it's one of those things where I can walk away today and not be sad about it."
Stairs was let go by the Washington Nationals on Monday and will retire with 265 home runs.
The New Brunswick-born athlete broke into the major leagues with the Montreal Expos in the 1992-93 season and played for a total of 13 teams.
The fact that Stairs played on 13 different major league teams is also a MLB record.
Stairs won a World Series title with the Philadelphia Phillies in 2008 where he was celebrated for his pinch-hitting prowess. He hit a game-winning home run in Game 4 of the National League Championship Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2008.
Stairs has Major League Baseball's record for pinch-hit home runs with 23, a record he set in 2010 with the San Diego Padres. Stairs has a lifetime .263 batting average and 897 runs batted in.
Future in coaching
While the reality of his retirement is starting to sink in, Stairs admits he is going to miss playing in the major leagues.
"Maybe hitting a walk-off home run and seeing your buddies and the coaches and the fans going crazy coming across home plate," he said.
Stairs said he would like to make the move to coaching now that his playing days are done.
But for now, the father of three said he is glad he'll have some free time with his kids.
"They get me around full-time. Good or bad I'll be around full-time," he said.
"And I get to see all the things going on now that I've missed for 20 years."
Stairs and his family are in Bangor, Me., but are planning to move home to Fredericton soon.
It's the city where he first played ball and where his name is on the road leading to Royals Field on Baseball Hill.