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Ageless Arm

From EverybodyWiki Bios & Wiki

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Rodney Tafoya is a lefthanded pitcher that pitched for five-decades from 1986-2021. In his final season in professional baseball at age 57, he signed with the Independent Pecos League's, Alpine Cowboy's, his record setting tenth Pecos League team and overall twelfth Indy professional team from 1989-2021. In his final professional game (which after, he immediately retired as a five-decade professional baseball pitcher) he had planned on his final start on July 4, 2021 however, a three day downpour sent him to the bullpen as the entire Cowboy team spent the week preparing historic Kokernot Stadium for a first time triple-header to be played on July 6, 2021. In that game, Tafoya was asked to pitch in relief against the visiting Salina Stockade. In game two of the three game series with the Cowboy's ahead 3-2, Tafoya began to warm up in the fifth inning as he was summoned to pitch in the seventh inning to face leadoff hitter, Tevin Brown.

When Tafoya entered the game to start the top of the inning. Alpine team president and past broadcaster, Derek Pollacchi chose to be in the booth for Tafoya's historic final professional mound appearance. He chose, Frank Sinatra's ,"I did it my way," as a farewell to Tafoya for his time in baseball as he chose to finish his career in Alpine, Texas.

Fighting back five decades of tears, Tafoya proceeded to warm up with catcher Bryce Donovan, as leadoff batter Brown entered the right handed batter's box. On his first pitch for a strike, Tafoya pitch was officially clocked at 76 miles per hour. He threw only four pitches (all for strikes) before his final pitch, clocked at 78 miles per hour, barralled inside as Brown swung to the sound of a cracked-bat induced ground out to second base for the first out of the seventh inning. Afterwards, Tafoya was surrounded by an infield of hand shakes and high-fives as Cowboy manager, Sean Persky walked to the mound to greet him and take him out to a plethora of applause and a standing ovation by the home crowd. Tafoya again was met by his teammates at the first base four line to more hand shakes and heartfelt hugs. But it was Tafoya’s amateur career that was a heralded success. From 1984-2021, he pitched for exactly 200 different team's across America, Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and New Zealand amassing a career record in the Men's Adult Baseball League's of 459-98 for a winning percentage of .824 For his efforts, he was enshrined to the MSBL (Men's Senior Baseball League) Hall of Fame in 2014. He held this distinction by winning 300 games and losing only 60 losses for a winning percentage of .833 from 1994-2014. Tafoya is only one of two recipients in the MSBL Hall of Fame which has over 60,000 player's in League's across America. Tafoya was called upon again in 2018, as he was enshrined to the National Baseball Semi-Professional Hall of Fame in Evansville, Indiana for winning 441 games at the time of his induction.

He stayed at NMHU from 1982 to 1985.

In 1985, Rod transferred to NAIA powerhouse Newman University, where he met Newman coach Paul Sanagorski, who was the pitching coach for the Jayhawk Summer League's Wichita Broncos. The Broncos reached the NBC (National Baseball Congress) World Series that summer. At Newman, Rod achieved an NAIA All-District 7 mention while posting a 6–2 record and 86 strikeouts (a then school record). He also received his college degree in business management.


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