I found this story very inspiring. I still play competitive softball at age 57, and when I saw Paul is from Albuquerque I had to post this!
The St. Paul Saints took a pass on 60-year-old pitcher Paul Risso but the right-hander insists professional baseball has not passed him by.
Risso threw a successful 30-pitch bullpen but not make the cut Sunday, May 5, during tryouts at Midway Stadium as the Saints prepare for their 21st season in the American Association.
A sixth-round draft choice of the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1973 Risso injured his shoulder as a 20-year-old and never fulfilled his baseball dream. The water engineer was trying to earn an invitation to Saints spring training and become the oldest player in the team’s history.
Risso, who lives in Albuquerque, has played in a men’s senior league in New Mexico for the past seven years. He also tried out for two
“Everyone with the Saints was terrific. Unfortunately, they’re only looking for one more pitcher and they won’t be able to do anything with me,” Risso wrote in an email Sunday. “I’m hoping to throw for another team in Texas and perhaps will pitch in a winter league for those aspiring to play pro ball.”
Risso was playing for San Mateo (Calif.) College 40 years ago when he felt like someone had jammed an ice pick into his shoulder. He suspected he tore his rotator cuff, but in that bygone era before MRI exams and overly cautious player development programs diagnosed trouble, Risso’s arm was simply considered dead.
Surgery was not an option so the Pirates
“As always, I’ll work harder and keep pursuing my ‘unfinished business,’ ” Risso wrote.
Follow Brian Murphy on twitter.com/murphPPress.