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Baseball Notes: Sources: Nationals to hire Matt Williams

The Washington Nationals are planning to hire major-league veteran Matt Williams as their fifth manager since baseball returned to the nation's capital, according to multiple reports.

The Washington Nationals are planning to hire major-league veteran Matt Williams as their fifth manager since baseball returned to the nation's capital, according to multiple reports.

The Nationals have not confirmed Williams as the replacement for the retired Davey Johnson because Major League Baseball prohibits teams from making major announcements during the World Series.

A five-time all-star third baseman for the San Francisco Giants, Cleveland Indians and Arizona Diamondbacks, the 47-year-old Williams will be making his big-league managing debut after serving in coaching roles for the Diamondbacks for four years.

If hired, Williams will be the first person named in the Mitchell Report, MLB's first official documentation of performance-enhancing drug use in baseball, to become a manager.

Rising star. Righthander Masahiro Tanaka will be aiming to extend one of the most successful runs in baseball history when he takes the mound for the Rakuten Golden Eagles in Game 1 of the Japan Series on Saturday.

Tanaka went 24-0 this season and will be looking to extend his consecutive-wins streak in the best-of-seven series against Tokyo's Yomiuri Giants.

Going back to Aug. 19, 2012, the last time he lost a game, the 24-year-old Tanaka has won 30 in a row.

Several major-league teams, including the Yankees, Dodgers, Giants, Red Sox, Rangers, and Athletics, are expected to enter the Tanaka sweepstakes once the season ends - if, as expected, he's made available via the posting system that allows MLB teams to bid for the negotiating rights to Japanese players.

The Phillies' new third-base coach, Pete Mackanin, scouted Tanaka for the Yankees before leaving earlier this month to join Ryne Sandberg's staff.