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Nats' get pinch-hit specialist Stairs

Philadelphia Phillies Matt Stairs (R) is congratulated after hitting a two run home run to take the lead over the Los Angeles Dodgers during the eighth inning of Game 4 of the National League Championship Series in Los Angeles on October 13, 2008. (UPI Photo/Phil McCarten)
Philadelphia Phillies Matt Stairs (R) is congratulated after hitting a two run home run to take the lead over the Los Angeles Dodgers during the eighth inning of Game 4 of the National League Championship Series in Los Angeles on October 13, 2008. (UPI Photo/Phil McCarten) | License Photo

WASHINGTON, Dec. 14 (UPI) -- Aging pinch-hitting specialist Matt Stairs will go to spring training with an opportunity to play for the Washington Nationals, the club said Tuesday.

The Nationals said Stairs, who turns 43 in February, agreed to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training. He would be used primarily as a pinch-hitter and first baseman, though he has experience in the outfield.

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Last year with San Diego, he tied for the big league lead with four pinch-hit home runs. Overall, he had six homers with 16 runs batted in while batting .232 in 78 games (111 at-bats).

Stairs, who shares the record for playing for the most teams, broke in with Montreal in 1992. Besides San Diego, he also has played for Boston, Oakland, the Chicago Cubs, Milwaukee, Pittsburgh, Kansas City, Detroit, Texas, Toronto and Philadelphia.

He holds the major league record with 23 pinch-hit homers. In 1,839 career games, Stairs has batted .264 with 265 homers and 897 runs batted in.

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