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Saturday, March 26, 2022

Bob Fralick's playing career ended on Peleliu in WWII; His coaching, scouting career continued a lifetime

Bob Fralick started in baseball. Then he turned Marine.

On the morning of Sept. 15, 1944, he arrived at Peleliu as the fight for the Pacific islands began, The New Haven Register wrote.

"I was still only a kid," Fralick told The Register in 2013, at the age of 87. "Most of us were. I happened to be in the first wave of people to go ashore, and it was just awful. I was frightened to death. Everyone seemed to be shooting at me."

Wounded by mortar fire, Fralick survived, but never played again. He did, however, still contribute much to the game over more than four decades as a coach and as a scout.

He ultimately passed away in December 2021, at the age of 96.

Born in August 1925, Fralick's brief baseball career came in the Giants organization. But then came the war, and he enlisted, his obituary reads.

After his injury in the first wave to assault the islands, Fralick spent a year in hospitals and underwent three surgeries to allow him to walk again, according to his obituary. Shrapnel remained in his foot for the rest of his life.

He then worked in other jobs, before becoming a scout for the Mets, Phillies and Red Sox. He also coached high school sports in Middletown, Conn., where his work earned him induction into the local sports Hall of Fame in 2010.

By 1978, he was scouting for the Red Sox. He attended a Connecticut baseball clinic that June, and gave some advice on learning multiple positions, The Hartford Courant wrote.

"You can't just play one position or you'll die there," Fralick told The Courant then.

He continued with the Red Sox as a scout and a coach until 1987, when he became a coach at the Bucky Dent Baseball School in Florida. He also coached in the Senior League going into 1990 and with independent Miami in 1990 and 1991.

He stayed with the Bucky Dent school for 12 seasons before he returned to Connecticut and he continued to instruct children into his 80s through his own Bob Fralick Baseball School, his obituary reads.

"He leaves a legacy of everything he passed down to countless people, he was in fact a library of knowledge," his obituary reads. "His charm, humor and generosity were well known to those who knew him."

1990 Minor League Tally 
Players/Coaches Featured:3,875
Made the Majors:1,294-33.4%
Never Made Majors:2,581-66.6%-X
5+ Seasons in the Majors:528
10+ Seasons in the Minors:324

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