Bob Coluccio (The Macaroni Pony): Former 1970's Italian / American Outfielder & Short Time Met: (1973-1978)

Robert Pasquali Coluccio
was born to Italian immigrants on October 2, 1951, in Centralia Washington. 
The five-foot eleven right hand hitting outfielder starred in two sports getting offered both college football & baseball contracts.

In 1969 he chose baseball signing with his home state baseball team the Seattle Pilots in their only year of existence.

Coluccio hit .277 at A ball Clinton in 1970. In 1971 he went between A & AA ball but only hit .214. In 1972 at AA Evansville, he batted .300 with 9 HRs 58 RBIs getting him an invite to Spring Training in 1973. 

By 1973 the Seattle Pilots had moved to Milwaukee after just one year in the Northwest city. That spring, Coluccio beat out a young Gorman Thomas for the regular outfielder position. Coluccio was a fine defensive outfielder with a strong throwing arm.


Trivia: Coluccio was labeled “The Macaroni Pony” by Brewer's famous broadcaster Bob Ucker. Milwaukee had a large Italian population & Coluccio soon became one of their favorites. In his right field position, fans would bring him jugs of homemade wine to take home.

In the first ten days of June 1973, he drove in ten runs for the Brew Crew. He had 14 multi RBI games that season, including two where he drove in four runs. 

On July 7th he hit a grand slam HR against the Texas Rangers in a 17-2 blow out. That year he also hit an inside the park HR in the original A.L. New York ballpark.

The speedy outfielder got into 124 games for the fifth place Brewers, hitting 15 HRs, showing the most power of his career. He also hit eight triples (5th most in the AL) with 21 doubles & 58 RBIs while batting .224.

The next year in 1974, he played in 138 games but got fewer at bats as his numbers fell off. He hit six HRs with 18 doubles & 31 RBIs. 

Trivia: His 1975 baseball card showed him looking at what appears to be a called strike, in his powder blue Milwaukee Road uniform. It was a cool in action shot.  Coluccio wore two batting gloves which was still rare at the time.

That year he was traded to the Chicago White Sox for Bill Sharp. There he only hit .205 overall in 83 games. Coluccio played all of the bicentennial year at AAA Iowa batting .244.

In 1977 he spent most of the years in the minors, appearing in 20 games at the major league level hitting .270. In 1978 he was released by the White Sox, getting picked up by the Houston Astros but was soon traded to the St. Louis Cardinals for fellow Italian, Frank Riccelli. 

He appeared in just five games going 0-4 for the Cardinals.

Mets Career: In October of 1978, he was traded to the New York Mets in exchange for Paul Siebert. Unfortunately, Coluccio didn't make the club & his career was over at age 28.

Career Stats: In his five-year career, he hit .220 with 241 hits 26 HRs 38 doubles 114 RBIs & a .305 on base % in 370 career games. 

Retirement:  He returned home to take care of his father who was diagnosed with cancer & managed the family assets. 

In the 1980’s he moved to Southern California and became a successful real estate agent in Newport Beach, California for over forty years. 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Remembering Bobby Ojeda's Tragic Boating Accident (1993)

Remembering Sal Bando: Former Italian / American All Star (1966 - 1981)

Remembering Vixen Founder / Guitarist; Jan Kuehnemund (1961-2013)

The Odd Couple TV Show's Beloved Supporting Cast

The 1970's Oakland A's Ball Girls- (MLB's First)