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  • Writer's pictureMaine Baseball HOF

Bissonette, Del (1969)

Updated: May 18, 2022

Bissonette, Del (69)

Del Bissonette of Winthrop was Brooklyn first baseman from 1928 to 1933 with a lifetime batting average of .305, and holds the Sunday Telegram League all time batting record of .600 . Bissonette, a one-time terrifier of batters and later terrorizer of moundsmen. Del the superb southpaw pitcher who s a schoolboy set down on strikes such sluggers as Babe Ruth and Rogers Hornsby, the Winthrop walloper, who wouldn’t be denied major league entry even when his pitching arm went dead while at Georgetown University. BISSONETTE, whose .600 telegram League batting average hasn’t been approached, batted his way to the Brooklyn Dodgers where he set a National League homer record his rookie year, and exited six years later with a .305 lifetime average.

Even more the measure of a man was his response in 1947 to old friend Haley’s need for a manager for Haley’s Portland Pilots. This move by a diamond giant saved

for a season or two the local franchise. Del also managed the Boston Braves in 1946.

"The man who would have been the Babe Ruth of Maine: that’s the label generally bestowed upon Del Bissonette."

"I am guessing that Bissonette is wearing a Portland Pilots uniform. that was the team that he managed in his home state of Maine in the late 1940's. before that, however, he was a ballplayer touted as a Babe Ruth type talent, largely because he was both a left-handed pitcher and a skilled batter. he hurt his arm at some point before signing with Brooklyn, and so focused solely on hitting. as a rookie for the Robins in 1928, Bissonette played in a league-leading 155 games, and hit .320 with 25 home runs and 106 rbi. He was the Robins' first baseman for the next three seasons as well, and after his first four years in the majors, Bissonette owned a .308 career batting average with a .376 on-base percentage and a ops of .870. not Ruthian, but not bad, either. unfortunately, Bissonette severed his achilles tendon in a spring training volleyball mishap in 1932, and he missed the entire season. he was back in 1933, but underperformed and was traded away. He failed in his attempts to return to the majors, and eventually went into managing - both at the minor and major league level."

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