- Last Updated on Wednesday, 31 October 2018 10:56
Bruce Dal Canton, a 1963 graduate of California State College in California, PA will be one of twelve honorees inducted into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame.
The Class of 2018 will be honored on November 3 at the Woodland Resort and Convention Center in Wilkes-Barre, PA. For Ticket information contact Jerry Valonis at 570-498-9461 or Joe Bordell at 570-259-9073.
Dal Canton had a fastball that powered the Cal State Vulcans to the District 30 title and their first NAIA National tournament. Bruce held an astonishing 1.30 ERA, which remains a school and PSAC record. A fellow player in the Fayette County League, Cecil Cole, got Bruce a private workout with the Pittsburgh Pirates resulting in a contract.
Dal Canton made his major league debut with the Pirates in 1967. With the Bucs through 1970, the right-handed pitcher went 20-8 with a 3.34 ERA over 86 innings of relief. Bruce was able to fool batters with his velocity of pitches, developing a sneaky fastball and deadly curve.
Traded to Kansas City in the winter of 1970, he performed as a starter. On August 14, 1972, Dal Canton set a club record by retiring 23 consecutive batters. Bruce was able to extend his career by developing a knuckleball. He pitched for the Atlanta Braves in 1976 and then signed with the White Sox in 1977.
With the White Sox at the end of his career, Bruce seamlessly moved into the role of pitching coach. From 1982 through 2008 and his untimely passing, Bruce was an integral part of the Atlanta Braves organization. He was with the Braves as pitching coach from 1987 to 1990. He became a Braves’ organization instructor in 1991 and tutored young pitchers at Myrtle Beach. At heart a teacher, Dal Canton got his prodigies to understand both the art and science of getting hitters out. More than 30 players under his guidance made it to the major leagues, each one a living monument to Dal Canton’s work. Calm, personable, and a patient mentor, Bruce was deeply mourned at his passing by the Braves’ organization.
Bruce was also inducted into the Mid Mon Valley All Sports Hall of Fame in 1996, and becomes the 23rd Mid Mon Valley inductee elected to the PA state Hall of Fame.