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Get To Know Your Nationals: Third Base Coach Pat Listach.

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Drafted out of Arizona State University by Milwaukee with the 133rd overall pick of the 1988 MLB Amateur Draft , IF/OF Pat Listach played 4 seasons in the Brewers' system before he debuted in the Majors on April 8, 1992, and 149 games later, after having hit .290 with 19 doubles, 6 triples, 1 HR and 47 RBI's, the then-24-year-old Listach was named the 1992 Rookie of Year in the American League. 

By the time Milwaukee traded Listach to New York three years later, the injury- plagued outfielder was just a throw-in in a deal to bring left-handed reliever Graeme Lloyd to the Yankees according to New York Times' writer Jason Diamos' 8/24/96 article entitled, "Yanks, Seeking Relief, Trade for a Left-Hander":

"The 28-year-old Listach, who plays outfield, shortstop and second base, was the American League rookie of the year in 1992. But it was Lloyd the Yankees were after...'For me, he's the backup center fielder,'' (NY GM Bob) Watson said of Listach, who won his rookie of the year award as an infielder.'"

Less than two months later, on October 2, 1996, Listach, who, it was discovered, had suffered a hairline fracture in his right foot as a Brewer just days before being traded to NY, was returned to Milwaukee, with another player, SS Gabby Martinez, replacing him in the deal, and the Brewers wasted no time, according to New York Times' writer Jack Curry's humorously-titled, 10/3/96 article, "Yankees Owner's Request Irks the Rangers' Wives",...(ed. note - "So (Owner's Request) and (Rangers' Wives) get possessive apostrophe's but not Yankees Owner...Hmm? It is the Times, the paper of record?") announcing that they, "...would not exercise the option on his contract," making Listach a free agent when his contract expired.

Listach would play just 52 games in the Majors after 1996, all for the Astros in '97, and he'd hang around another season in '98 with Cleveland and Philadelphia's Triple-A affiliates before the 31-year old retired from the game...

...Before being hired by the Washington Nationals to replace much-maligned outgoing Third Base Coach Tim Tolman, Pat Listach coached in the Cubs' system for three seasons according to Washington Post writer Chico Harlan's 10/25/08 article entitled, "Nats Add Grissom, Listach as Coaches", and though he had once been considered by the Cubs as a potential Manager as's Carrie Muskat reported in a 10/17/06 article announcing, "Piniella takes on challenges with Cubs", as the article's title explains, Lou Piniella got the job in Chicago, and even after having won the Triple-A Pacific Coast League's Manager of the Year award for his work with the Iowa Cubs in 2008, in Mr. Listach's own words, as related to Des Moines Register writer Randy Peterson, in a 10/25/08 article entitled, "Baseball: Former I-Cubs manager Listach joins staff of Nats":

"'The Cubs made the playoffs back-to-back years, and I know Lou is loyal to his staff, and that's the way it should be,' Listach said. 'The Cubs are on the verge; there's no reason to make changes.'"

After his time in the Cubs' organization, Listach, "...comes highly recommended by Cubs manager Lou Piniella, who is one of Bowden's mentors", according to's Bill Ladson's 10/24/08 article entitled, "Nationals add five to coaching staff", where Mr. Ladson quotes DC GM Jim Bowden, who says that his mentor, Mr. Piniella, "'...swears that [Listach] will not only be a good big league manager, but a phenomenal big league manager someday.'" 

It took Listach 4 years in the Minors with Milwaukee before he made his MLB debut as a player, and just 3 years as a Manager with the Cubs' before he's earned a call to the Majors to coach third for DC, so if things continues to progress similarly, Pat Listach should be Managing in the Majors within the next two seasons just as Mr. Piniella predicted, which was Mr. Listach's goal all along, as he explained to Des Moines Register writer Randy Peterson, again in Mr. Peterson's article, "Baseball: Former I-Cubs manager Listach joins staff of Nats":

"'Some guys get content to be in the minor leagues, and don't get me wrong, I loved every minute of it, but my goal has always been to get to the big leagues..." That's why he said yes when Nationals manager Manny Acta called...’That window doesn't open too often,’ Listach said. ‘I'd be stupid not to take it.’”


-- (ed. note - "In case you missed the earlier editions of the "Get To Know Your Nationals" series, here they are:

"Get To Know Your Nationals: Bench Coach Jim Riggleman"

"Get To Know Your Nationals: First Base Coach Marquis Grissom"

...still to come, a reintroduction to Pitching Coach Randy St. Claire and a look at new Bullpen Coach Randy Knorr...")