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Player: Abbaticchio, Ed
Card: 1906 Piedmont #T206
Along with Ping Bodie, Ed was the first Major Leaguer of Italian Descent to have a substantial MLB career – 1897-1910. Ed was also a professional football player and was the first two sport professional athlete (way before Bo Jackson).
Born on April 15, 1877, in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, Edward James Abbaticchio was the sixth of nine children of Italian immigrants Archangelo Rafaelle Abbaticchio and Maria Filomena Sorrentino.
It was well known during his career that Abbaticchio was independently wealthy, and played baseball for love, not money. In his “missing” 1906 season, Abbaticchio was not injured or cut – he merely elected instead that year to manage a Pittsburgh hotel that he owned. A possibly apocryphal tale said that he had been given the hotel by his father on the condition that he renounce baseball. He was a fair player during his nine seasons, leading the NL in at bats (610) with the Boston Beaneaters in 1905, a season he batted .279 with 12 triples and 25 doubles.
Ed played for the Philadelphia Phillies, Pittsburgh Pirates, Boston Beaneaters, and Boston Doves. He won a World Series with the Pittsburgh Pirates in 1909.
Ed was a good friend of Pirates great Honus Wagner. The two played alongside each other in the Pirate infield. Wagner once called him a “great second baseman with whom he had the honor to play with.” Statistically, Ed was an above-average fielder and base thief.
Abbaticchio is part of the Italian American Sports Hall of Fame Tour – Go to the Next Stop
Ed is also part of the Philadelphia Phillies Player Tour – Go to the Next Stop
See Ed’s baseball cards at TCDB
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