"He instinctively can find the shining greatness of our American culture and does a good job of highlighting it (although he also does have those rare lapses when he writes about hockey, but that is something caused by impurities in the Eastern waters or something)." Erik Keilholtz
Under the patronage of St. Tammany
Mark C. N. Sullivan is an editor at a Massachusetts university. He is married and the father of three children. Email
"He was baseball's JFK." Tony Conigliaro was the local boy made good, the pride of East Boston and St. Mary's High in Lynn, the youngest player to ever lead the major leagues in home runs and, at age 22, the fastest to reach 100 home runs. He would have rewritten the record book, but his career was cut short, as was his life.
There have been two great tragedies in Red Sox history, both involving local Boston boys with matinee-idol good looks and seemingly limitless futures. The first involved the Golden Greek, Harry Agganis, who died tragically in 1953 at the age of 23. The second of the Greco-Roman tragedies came more than a decade later on August 18, 1967, a steamy night in the midst of one of the hottest and most memorable pennant races in American League history. Hometown hero Tony Conigliaro was hit in the head by a fastball thrown by California Angels pitcher Jack Hamilton. The blow almost killed him and he was never the same again. He had 20 home runs at the time of his beaning.
Tony C. is listed 32nd in the Boston Globe's rankings of top New England sports figures of the 20th century, and 13th among Sports Illustrated's 50 greatest sports figures from Massachusetts. He's also in the Boston Rock & Roll Museum. A campaign has been mounted to call on the Red Sox to retire his No. 25, and the team rightly should.
Elsewhere: Johnny Pesky is interviewed by a paper from his native Portland, Ore., and the Globe's Alex Beam makes a pitch for Les Expos to play in Boston.