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  • Writer's pictureMaine Baseball HOF

Nappi, Frank (1994)

Frank Nappi was Portland High School's last four letter man and earned an amazing fifteen varsity letters at P.H.S. Although Frank was certainly a “man for all seasons" for P.H.S. in the early 1950's, it was in the spring that his star shone brightest.

During his four years of varsity baseball, Portland High had four winning seasons, highlighted by a 14-2 record during his senior year.

he captained that 1953 squad to the Telegram League title. Tonight, Frank joins teammate Willie Greenlaw and Coach Edson in the Maine hall.

In addition to his timely hitting and outstanding fielding at third base, Nappi was known for his exceptionally strong throwing arm. He also used that powerful right arm to quarterback P.H.S. to the 1952 state football championship and to win both the 1953 Maine and New England High School javelin titles.

Opting to continue his education, Frank turned down opportunities to join the Milwaukee Braves and New York Yankees farm system teams. After a year at Milford, Conn., Prep, Nappi went on to play three years of football and baseball at the Univ. of Nebraska.

in his junior year, he led the Cornhuskers in batting (.324) and sparked them to a second place finish in the Big Eight Conference.

In the mid and late 1950's, Frank played several seasons in Portlands Twilight League. He was an integral part of three championship teams and was consistently among the league's leading hitters (.417 in 1955 & .391 in 1956).

From Nebraska, Nappi joined the U.S. Army where he again excelled in several sports. While at Fort Dix, NJ, he was all-Army at half-back, as well as all-Army javelin champion (teammate of Olympian Don Bragg).

Despite splitting his time between the infield and outfield tor the Fort Dix Burros, Frank was twice chosen for all-Army honors.

After considering offers from the AFL New York Titans and another pro baseball bid, Nappi decided to complete his college career. At Austin Peay State College, Frank was a 1962 Tennessee Valley All Conference baseball selection.

Frank then spent five years teaching and coaching in Trenton, NJ, followed by two decades in the civil service as the Fort Dix Youth Director. After retirement, Sally and Frank returned to Portland, where Frank has been involved in various sports, youth and community organizations.

From Legacy Pages ~ Portland Press Herald

Frank Nappi, 74 BUXTON -- Frank Nappi, 74, a Portland native, born May 21, 1934 and a graduate of Portland High School in 1953 passed away peacefully on Oct. 8, 2008

Frank has received many awards etc. for his dedication to athletics such as: Enshrinement into the Maine Sports Hall of Fame in 1990; The Maine Baseball Hall of Fame, 1994. He is also an original member of the Sports Legends Association.

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