“Now cracks a noble heart. Good-night, sweet prince; And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest.” William Shakespeare

Tony now knew his baseball career was behind him. Resolution came with that as he pursued his future and that future came with a natural match, a TV sportscaster in Providence Rhode Island. And why not, after all he had the looks of a pop idol!

And he had achieved a decent level of success as a recording artist while he was playing.

Sports and TV were a perfect combination for Tony Conigliaro and after a brief stint in Rhode Island, Tony headed back to the west coast, only this time to San Francisco.

Frisco was a much better fit for Conig and he thrived there. Then word came from Boston that Ken Harrelson was leaving his post as a color commentater for the Boston Red Sox. Tony jumped at the chance and flew home for the interview. An interview he aced and with everything set to go, Tony C was heading home, back to the Red Sox and back to Fenway Park. On his way to the airport with his brother Billy, returning to settle things in San Francisco Tony suffered a massive myocardial infarction.

Billy rushed him to Mass General Hospital where they were able to save him, however after four months in a coma Tony Conigliaro was gone. Suffering massive brain damage, he was left needing 24 hour care and he was devotedly looked after by his family until his death in 1990 at the age of 45.

Tony C. steps in for his first Fenway at bat.

On opening day 2004 at Fenway Park I was seated in the lower third base box as the Red Sox kicked off the ’04’ season commemorating the 40th anniversary of Tony C’s Fenway debut. On the field were the 2004 St. Mary’s of Lynn High School baseball team (Tony’s alma mater) Johnny Pesky (Tony’s first manager) Tony’s brothers Billy and Richie and throwing out the first pitch was Tony’s namesake, his four year old nephew, Tony Conigliaro. The jumbo-tron in centerfield played Tony’s first Fenway at bat and once again Curt Gowdys call was heared, “he hit a bomb!” And for an ever so brief moment the energy that was Tony C once again reverberated throughout Fenway Park. It is fitting that the magic that became 2004 would begin with a celebration of the magic that was Tony C.

It is difficult to not wax poetic when it comes to the tale of Tony Conigliaro. For at a time when he should have been putting the finishing touches on a phenomenal baseball career and awaiting the call from Cooperstown, he was gone. He was indeed the meteor that screamed across the sky while we mere mortals paused and watched. He was the rose blooming in such brilliance ones breath shortened in its presence. He was the butterfly floating in its gracefulness, too beautiful to last but for a whisper in time.

Yet as all wonders do, he left an indelible mark and those who love this greatest of games and got to see him play, decades later shake their heads at the magic, the grace, the guile, the tragedy!

Good night Sweet Prince and thank you. Thank you for the wonder of it all.

       And so it was at this time in Fenway Park history 1964-1975, Tony’s time.

 

 

 

 

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About fenwaypark100

Hello and welcome, my name is Raymond Sinibaldi. An educator for more than two decades, a baseball fan for nearly 60 years, I have authored four books about baseball and her glorious history; with a fifth on the way in late spring of 2015; the first, The Babe in Red Stockings which was co-authored with Kerry Keene and David Hickey. It is a chronicle of Babe's days with the Red Sox. We also penned a screenplay about Babe's Red Sox days so if any of you are Hollywood inclined or would like to represent us in forwarding that effort feel free to contact me through my email. In 2012 we three amigos published Images of Fenway Park in honor of the 100th birthday of Fenway Park. That led to the creation of this blog. The following year, 2013 came my first solo venture, Spring Training in Bradenton and Sarasota. This is a pictorial history of spring training in those two Florida cities. The spring of 2014 brought forth the 1967 Red Sox, The Impossible Dream Season. The title speaks for itself and it also is a pictorial history. Many of the photos in this book were never published before. The spring of 2015 will bring 1975 Red Sox, American League Champions. Another pictorial effort, this will be about the Red Sox championship season of 1975 and the World Series that restored baseball in America. I was fortunate enough to consult with sculptor Franc Talarico on the “Jimmy Fund” statue of Ted Williams which stands outside both Fenway Park and Jet Blue Park Fenway South, in Fort Myers Florida. That story is contained in the near 300 posts which are contained herein. This blog has been dormant for awhile but 2015 will bring it back to life so jump on board, pass the word and feel free to contact me about anything you read or ideas you may have for a topic. Thanks for stopping by, poke around and enjoy. Autographed copies of all my books are available here, simply click on Raymond Sinibaldi and email me.
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4 Responses to “Now cracks a noble heart. Good-night, sweet prince; And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest.” William Shakespeare

  1. Lauren Conigliaro says:

    Thank you for writing this. Tony & Billy & the crew were my cousins…

  2. James Rosenthal says:

    Any and EVERYTIME i read ,hear ,see his name and watever little blurb written with it i and without shame tear up thinking of how amazing and yet unfair his story is and was

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