The Obit For Bruce Dal Canton

Pelicans only pitching coach, Dal Canton, dies at 66

Pelicans Team Press Release, October 9, 2008

MYRTLE BEACH – The Myrtle Beach Pelicans lost the only pitching coach the team has known when Bruce Dal “DC” Canton died of esophageal cancer Tuesday night. He was 66.

“We’ve all lost an extraordinary human being and tremendous friend. Everyone who knew him loved him. He was a teacher of irreplaceable ability in both baseball and life,” Pelicans’ manager Rocket Wheeler said.

Canton was the only pitching coach the Pelicans have had. He served in that role and guided more than 30 hurlers to the big leagues since the franchise’s inception in 1999.

He left the team during the 2008 season on May 16th after learning of a mass that was eventually discovered to be cancerous at the base of his esophagus. Braves’ roving pitching instructor Mike Alvarez finished the season as the Pelicans’ acting pitching coach.

“DC wore the brand of baseball-man better than anyone I’ve ever been around. He treated everyone he encountered with the same level of respect and kindness. It is hard to accurately express the depth of our sadness at his passing.” Pelicans’ General Manager North Johnson said.

A memorial service for Dal Canton will be held at the Bagnato Funeral Home in Carnegie, PA, on Saturday at 10 a.m. The Pelicans will honor Canton during a pre-game ceremony at their 2009 home opener against the Wilmington Blue Rocks on April 9, 2009.

Over a 12-year major league career beginning in 1967, Dal Canton compiled a 51-49 record as a spot-starter with the Pirates, Royals, Braves, and White Sox.

Primarily a reliever with Pittsburgh, he went 20-8 for the Pirates between 1967 and 1970. He pitched over a year without a loss recording a 7-0 mark from June 29, 1969 to July 20, 1970.

With Kansas City, he set a Royals’ club record (later broken by Steve Busby in 1974) when he retired 23 consecutive batters against the Yankees on August 14, 1972.

Signed by the Braves after his release by Kansas City in 1975, Canton pitched in Atlanta through 1976. The White Sox signed him as a free agent in April of 1977, and after his release in June of 1978, he served as the White Sox pitching coach for the remainder of the season.

Prior to joining Myrtle Beach in 1999, Canton worked with the Danville 97’s as pitching coach.

He served as pitching coach with the Greenville Braves from 1994-1997, which included a Southern League Championship in 1997.

He was pitching coach for the Richmond Braves from 1991-1993, after serving the staff as its pitching coach from 1987-1990.

Del Canton has been a fixture in the Braves organization since 1982 when he joined the Atlanta Braves as a roving minor league pitching instructor. He was pitching coach at Savannah in 1983, Greenville in 1984, and Richmond in 1985-’86.

Those wishing to send flowers and condolences are asked to do so to the following address:

Bagnato Funeral Home
50 Jefferson St.
Carnegie, PA 15106