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February 22. 2013 7:03PM

Rico Petrocelli


 

Rico Petrocelli was inducted into the Red Sox Hall of Fame in 1997. He started in the 1967 and '69 All-Star Games, and was known as one of the league's best fielders for over a decade. He played in 1,553 regular season games and 17 post-season games over 12 years.

Born in Brooklyn, New York on June 27, 1943, Americo Peter "Rico" Petrocelli, played first as a shortstop and then as a third baseman with the Boston Red Sox for his entire career.

In 1969, Petrocelli set the American League record for home runs by a shortstop (40, broken by Seattle's Alex Rodriguez with 42 in 1998) and tied the record for fewest errors by a shortstop (14). In 1976, which turned out to be his final year playing professionally, he was plagued by a hamstring injury. On September 15 of that year he was hit in the head by a pitch thrown by Milwaukee pitcher Jim Slaton.

Petrocelli retired after the 1976 season, and worked as a minor league coach for more than 10 years, mostly in the Red Sox organization. He currently lives in Nashua, New Hampshire with his wife of more than forty years, Elsie. They have four grown children together. Petrocelli has an office in Nashua, where he runs his own business, Petrocelli Marketing Group, a company that sells customizable promotional products. He also continues to work at baseball clinics and runs a second company, Petrocelli Sports, Inc. from which he books speaking engagements, celebrity appearances and manages sports memorabilia.



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