Former Minnesota Twins coach Rick Stelmaszek died from complications of pancreatic cancer, the team announced Monday. Stelmaszek was 69.
“The Minnesota Twins are deeply saddened by the loss of Rick Stelmaszek,” the team said in a statement. “A true Twins legend, ‘Stelly’ was widely respected throughout baseball. He was a professional who dedicated his life to Twins baseball and instilled a winning culture into generations of Twins players. The club, like many of his friends throughout the game, is thinking of his wife and son, Kathy and Michael, and the entire Stelmaszek family during this difficult time.”
Stelmaszek was a coach with the Twins from 1981 to 2012. It is the longest tenure in team history and third-longest with one team in baseball history.
He was the bullpen coach under managers Billy Gardner, Ray Miller, Tom Kelly and Ron Gardenhire. The team reached the postseason eight times and won the World Series in 1987 and 1991 by beating the St. Louis Cardinals and Atlanta Braves in seven games.
Stelmaszek was diagnosed with cancer in late 2016 and threw out the ceremonial first pitch on Opening Day at Target Field last season.
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