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Roberto Rodriguez, Mike Hershberger and Darrel Akerfelds pass away

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  • Roberto Rodriguez, Mike Hershberger and Darrel Akerfelds pass away



    Roberto Muñoz , grandeliga and figure of the Aragua Tigers, died yesterday morning of a heart attack at his home in Mendoza Foundation in Ottawa, at the age of 70 years, reported relatives of former pitcher.

    Muñoz served for 17 seasons in the Venezuelan Professional Baseball League from 1961 to 1979, Valencia, Acarigua, Magellan, La Guaira, Aragua, Lara and Caracas. With uniform maracayeros spent his best years and was instrumental in the titles of the 1971-1972 and 1974-1975 campaigns.
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    When David Schultz moved to Massillon some 30 years ago, he didn’t have to be introduced to Mike Hershberger to know who he was.

    As one of a handful of Massillon products who went on to experience success as a Major League Baseball player — a group that included Tommy Heinrich and Joe Sparma — Hershberger’s reputation preceded him.

    “I certainly knew who he was,” said Schultz, a former publisher of The Independent who now serves as a trustee at the Massillon Museum. “Being a baseball fan, the first names that clicked when I moved to Massillon were Tommy Heinrich and Mike Hershberger.

    “Eleven years in the big leagues, that’s a significant career. That’s a major leaguer.”

    Indeed it is. Turns out Hershberger didn’t just enjoy a major league career, but also a major league life.

    That life came to end when Hershberger, 72, died Sunday evening following a brief illness.
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    SAN DIEGO -- Padres bullpen coach Darrel Akerfelds, the longest-tenured member of the coaching staff, lost his nearly two-year battle with pancreatic cancer on Sunday in Phoenix. He was 50.

    Akerfelds, who was in his 11th season with the team in that role, hadn't been in uniform with the Padres since April 15 in Los Angeles.
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