Choroszy, Rod (2015)
“In 2011 I brought Rod on as an assistant at the
University of Southern Maine. His place on my staff has
enhanced my respect for him as a ‘great baseball mind.”… .
I lean on Rod many times for insights into what we should be doing.
He has an ‘old school’ respect for the game.”
- Ed Flaherty, Head Baseball Coach,
University of Southern Maine
“We do not stop playing
we grow old,
we grow old
we stop playing.”
- Rod Choroszy
The Maine Baseball Hall of fame is proud to induct Mr. Rod Choroszy into the class of 2015. The youngest of five children, Rod is the son of the late Ivonne and John Choroszy who always supported Rod and his love of the game. Rod grew up in Saco with his two older brothers and two older sisters. He is the proud father of two wonderful grown children, son Reid and daughter Teig. In addition, Rod has a young grandson Landon. Rod has retired from his career as a educator for both Saco and South Portland school departments where he taught for thirty-five years. Currently residing in Old Orchard Beach, Rod is presently working as an assistant baseball coach at the University of Southern Maine.
As a youngster, Rod played Little League in Saco and was a member of the 1961 All-star District 4 champions from Saco-Old Orchard Beach. Playing in the State tournament at Capital Park in Augusta they would lose a tough one run game to South Portland National.
In high school at Thornton Academy, Rod was a three sport athlete playing football, basketball and of course baseball. In baseball, Rod was a All -Telegram league selection in both 1966 and 1967. As a pitcher, Rod led the league in strikeouts in 1966 and 1967 as well as wins in 1967. Rod was very versatile in the field as he played eight of the nine positions during the 1966 season. As a hitter he batted over 300 each of his last three years. The highlight of his high school career occurred against Cheverus in 1967: Rod pitched a complete game eleven inning 1-0 victory while striking out twenty-two batters.
Rod was a graduate of the UMO and played for the legendary coach Jack Butterfield. “Jack was like a second father to me during my college career. He was tough but fair and helped me with both on and off the field issues.” Rod wishes that he had stayed in closer contact with Jack after college before his premature and untimely death in 1979. While playing for Orono, the team finished in second place in the Yankee conference in 1969 and won the state series as well. Rod led the team in appearance in 1971 with an ERA of 3.66. That same year, He would set the school record for appearance in a single season at fourteen. In addition, Rod also played for the Ametek Redskins pitching them to the twilight league championship in the late 1960’s.
In 1973, Rod started his coaching career and would coach at every youth level from Little League to American Legion. In 1996, he coached the Senior Babe Ruth State Championship team from South Portland.
While teaching at South Portland, Rod continued with his passion for baseball as the head coach for sixteen years. During that time frame, Rod’s teams made the playoffs twelve years with three regional final appearances. In 1991, South Portland won the Regional championship under Rod’s tutorage. Rod was the Telegram coach of the year in 1989 and the Topps Baseball coach of the year for the state of Maine in 1993.
Rod began his college coaching career in 2006 as an assistant coach at Southern Maine Community College. In the three years he was there, SMCC were conference champs twice and made an appearance in the National Tournament in 2007. Rod then moved on the St. Joseph’s College in 2009 as the pitching coach.
Under his guidance, his pitching staff would lead the nation with fewest walks per nine innings in 2010. The team would finish 3rd in the New England Regionals, the school’s highest finish to date.
Rod is currently coaching for the University of Southern Maine where he has been since 2011. He has been instrumental in helping the team to get to the college world series finishing second in the nation in 2013 and 4th in 2014. According to head coach Ed Flaherty, “Rod’s place on my staff has enhanced my respect for him as a great baseball mind. He knows the game inside and out. I have asked him to coach every aspect of the game. He works one on one with all our athletes and is highly respected by the players. He has played a big part in our recent success at the University. I lean on Rod many times for insights into what we should be doing. He has an old school respect for the game.”
Rod plans on continuing to coach well into the future. According to Rod, “We do not stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing.”