Mark McGwire will leave the St. Louis Cardinals to become the Los Angeles Dodgers hitting coach, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported Friday.

McGwire, the Cardinals hitting coach the past three seasons, reportedly told St. Louis officials he will accept the Dodgers' job offer in order to be closer to his family in Orange County.

The 49-year-old McGwire was lured out of retirement three years ago by Tony La Russa, his former manager in Oakland and St. Louis. McGwire has since been credited with helping Cardinals hitters Matt Holliday, Allen Craig, David Freese and Matt Carpenter.

The Cardinals were beaten in the National League Championship Series by the eventual world champion Giants this postseason.

McGwire was part of the A's last World Series championship team, earning his only ring as a player in 1989.

McGwire, the all-time leading home run hitter in Athletics franchise history with 363 homers, was baseball's most celebrated slugger after hitting a then-record 70 home runs for St. Louis in 1998. However, the 12-time All-Star's image was severely damaged when he later admitted using steroids.

With the Dodgers, McGwire will be working with manager Don Mattingly, another former American League All-Star first baseman. McGwire and Mattingly combined to make 15 All-Star Game appearances in the A.L., including nine by McGwire with the A's.