Tom Saffell, the former major league outfielder and longtime Gulf Coast Rookie League president, has died. He was 91.
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Saffell’s daughter, Cari Llewellyn, confirmed Monday that Saffell died last week. The Sarasota Herald-Tribune said he developed pneumonia after having surgery for a broken hip sustained in a fall.
”He had an amazing life,” Llewellyn said. ”He had quite a career. He worked up until he was 89 years old. He was quite a man.”
Saffell spent parts of four seasons with the Pittsburgh Pirates and Kansas City Athletics, hitting .238 with six homers and 40 RBI in 271 games. He played 17 seasons in the minors, including Triple-A stops with Indianapolis, Hollywood, Portland, Los Angeles and Spokane, and managed seven seasons in the minors.
President of the Gulf Coast Rookie League from 1979 to 2009, he was honored in 1999 as ”King of Baseball” at the Baseball Winter Meetings in Anaheim, Calif.
Saffell also was a fighter pilot during World War II.