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Darrell Akerfelds, Don Mincher and Terry Matthews, former Rangers players, pass away

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  • Darrell Akerfelds, Don Mincher and Terry Matthews, former Rangers players, pass away

    Akerfelds pitched for the Rangers in 1989. In his brief stint with the team, he had a 3.27 ERA and averaged nearly a strikeout per inning.

    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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    Mincher joined the Rangers in 1972, his final season. In 61 games, he hit six home runs while posting a 2:1 walk to strikeout ratio, which helped him to a 133 OPS+. He was involved in the deal that netted the squad Vic Harris, who was their starting centerfielder in 1973, when he was traded to the Athletics partway through the season.

    HUNTSVILLE, Alabama -- Don Mincher, the gentlemanly figure synonymous with Huntsville baseball for a half-century, died Sunday after a long illness. He was 73.

    Crowned in 2010 as "King of Baseball," the highest honor in Minor League Baseball, he was unique in baseball history in the various roles he held, from player to team owner to league president.

    "I'm proud of my career," he once said, "but I'd like to be recognized not only for what I did as a player, but doing other things in the game."
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    Mincher was 12-year major leaguer and served as president of Huntsville Stars, then as president of Southern League.

    Terry Matthews pitched for the Rangers in 1991 and 1992. He was a perfect 4-0 in 1990 and in 1992, he was third on the team in appearances.

    SURPRISE, Ariz. - Former Ranger right-hander Terry Matthews, who pitched for the club in 1991-92, died Friday of a heart attack at the age of 47 in Menard, La.

    Matthews pitched his first two seasons in the majors and went 6-4 with a 4.61 ERA. He was 22-21 in parts of eight major league seasons from 1991-99. Mathews, who grew up in Alexandria, La., may be best remembered in Rangers' circles for a mammoth homer he gave up to Oakland's Jose Canseco on April 18, 1992 at Arlington Stadium. The two-run, eighth-inning homer into the teeth of a wind was mentioned as being one of the hardest hit balls some long-time observers had seen.
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