Cito Gaston

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Clarence Edwin "Cito" Gaston born March 17, 1944) is a former Major League Baseball outfielder and manager. His major league career as a player lasted from 1967–1978, most notably for the San Diego Padres and the Atlanta Braves. His managerial career was with the Toronto Blue Jays where he became the first African-American manager in Major League history to win a World Series title.

Gaston managed the Toronto Blue Jays from 1989 to 1997, and again from 2008 to 2010. During this time, he managed the Blue Jays to four Division Titles (1989, 1991, 1992 and 1993).

Gaston began his decade-long playing career in 1967 with the Atlanta Braves, appearing in nine games. The following year he was selected by the San Diego Padres in the expansion draft, first playing for them in 1969. He had his best individual season in 1970, when he batted .318 with 29 home runs, 92 runs scored and 93 RBI, and was selected to the National League All-Star team.

Gaston became the hitting coach for the Toronto Blue Jays in 1982. Gaston remained the hitting instructor until 15 May 1989, when he took over managerial duties from Jimy Williams. Under Gaston's leadership, Toronto transformed from a sub-.500 team to the eventual division winners, going 89–73.

As a coach and manager, Gaston was considered a player's manager. He was a soft spoken and steady influence during years that saw a large group of talented, high salaried players grace the Blue Jays uniform. The franchise led the Major Leagues in attendance, riding high from a dedicated fan base and new stadium to play in when Gaston took the helm.

On June 20, 2008, Gaston was re-hired as the manager of the Blue Jays to replace the fired John Gibbons. At the time of his hiring, Gaston had been a special assistant to the CEO for the organization. In his second tenure as manager, he succeeded in improving the team's record to the point that it finished over .500. Gaston’s final season as a manager with the Blue Jays was 2010.

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