Bruce Dal Canton Dies

Bruce Dal Canton, a former high school teacher who turned a good showing at a tryout camp into a lengthy career as a major league pitcher and coach, died Tuesday. He was 66.

Dal Canton died of esophageal cancer. A Carnegie funeral home confirmed his death.

Born and raised near Pittsburgh, Dal Canton starred at California University of Pennsylvania. However, he didn't attract a lot of attention from big league scouts and went to work as a high school teacher and coach.

In the mid-1960s, Dal Canton went to a Pirates' tryout camp, hoping for one last chance at a baseball career. The Pirates signed him and he made his major league debut with them in 1967.

Dal Canton went 8-2 with Pittsburgh in 1969 and then 9-4 with the 1970 NL East champions. After that season, the Pirates traded him with Freddie Patek to Kansas City. He was 8-10 for the Royals in 1974 and pitched his only two career shutouts.

Dal Canton went 51-49 with a 3.67 ERA from 1967-77 with Pittsburgh, Kansas City, Atlanta and the Chicago White Sox.

He spent more than 25 years in the Atlanta system as a pitching coach, most recently at Class A Myrtle Beach in the Carolina League, where he coached until mid-May.