First on First: Ed Abbaticchio

Dec 02, 2015 828

Edward James Abbaticchio was born in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, on April 15, 1877. He began his athletic career in 1895 where he played football as both a fullback and kicker for the Latrobe Athletic Association. Ed became one of the first professional football players as the team was the first pro-football team in the nation. His coach, Fielding Yost, credited Ed with the invention of the spiral punt.

By the time he turned 20, Ed switched sports and made his Major League baseball debut with the Philadelphia Philles. During the next eight seasons, he played shortstop and second baseman for teams in Latrobe, Milwaukee and Boston. In 1906, he retired and moved back to his hometown. Ed took over his father's hotel and managed the newly renamed 777 Latrobe House. 

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