Nov 5, 2013, 8:47 PM EDT
Fired on July 22 from his job as hitting coach for the Washington Nationals, Rick Eckstein has finally landed on his feet, taking a position with the L.A. Angels of Anaheim.
Eckstein will help the Angels as an assistant hitting coach, but will also have advance scouting duties. FoxSports.com first reported the news.
Eckstein was named the Nationals’ hitting coach in October of 2008 and spent four seasons in the organization. He helped lead the Nats to their first division title and playoff appearance in 2012, a year they ranked tenth in the majors with 731 runs scored.
Eckstein saw five different National League Silver Sluggers won by Nats players during his tenure with the team. In 2012 Stephen Strasburg won the award for pitchers, Ian Desmond for shortstops and Adam LaRoche for first basemen. Ryan Zimmerman also won the honor for third basemen twice under Eckstein (2009, 2010).
The Nats replaced Eckstein with Rick Schu just weeks after the All-Star break looking for a spark to save their season. Eckstein was defended by manager Davey Johnson for months before the decision was made.
Before joining the Nats in Washington, Eckstein served as the hitting coach for the Triple-A Columbus Clippers. He was also on the coaching staff of the 2008 United States Olympic team that took home a bronze medal.
Eckstein joins the organization that his brother, David, won a World Series ring in 2002.
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