Longtime Twins coach Rick Stelmaszek dies from cancer

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Rick Stelmaszek, who was a coach for the Minnesota Twins from 1981-2012, died Monday after battling pancreatic cancer. He was 69.

Stelmaszek worked under five managers with the Twins: Johnny Goryl, Billy Gardner, Ray Miller, Tom Kelly and Ron Gardenhire and was part of two World Series champinships, in 1987 and 1991.

He was diagnosed with cancer in 2016. On April 3, the team brought him back to throw out the first pitch for Opening Day at Target Field.

The Twins released a statement that reads:

“The Minnesota Twins are deeply saddened by the loss of Rick Stelmaszek. 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 the longest-tenured coach in the history of the ballclub, and third-longest in Major League Baseball.

Funeral arrangements are pending.

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