The Texas Rangers have hired former Blue Jays shortstop Tony Fernandez as a special assistant to general manager Jon Daniels, according to ESPNDallas.com.
Fernandez, a four-time All-Star and winner of four Gold Gloves with the Blue Jays, will be in uniform with the Rangers during Spring Training and will continue to assist the club during the regular season. He was hired by the Blue Jays to coach Yunel Escobar over the winter.
“We’re excited to welcome Tony to our organization,” Daniels said in an official statement. “His work ethic and performance on the field are matched only by his grace and commitment to the community. He’ll be able to help our players in a number of ways.”
Signed as an amateur free agent by the Blue Jays in 1979, Fernandez forced his way onto the big-league roster with his strong play in the minors before breaking out in his first full campaign as a 23-year-old in 1985. After hitting .290/.340/.402 in six seasons with the Jays from 1985-1990, the Dominican Republic native was packaged with Fred McGriff in the blockbuster trade that brought Joe Carter and Roberto Alomar to Toronto.
Returning to the Jays in 1993 and winning the World Series, Fernandez returned to Toronto once again from 1998-99 and for part of the 2001 season, his last in the Majors. Though he played for seven teams in his career, Fernandez will always be known for the 1450 games he played for the Blue Jays.