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II Hero of the Minor Leagues
e for details
Place of Birth:
401st Glider Infantry Regiment US Army
Theater of Operations
Joe Damato signed a professional contract with Janesville of the
Wisconsin State League in 1941. Playing second base, third base
and the outfield, Damatao batted just .228 in 94 games. The
following year, still with Janesville, he turned things around
and hit .318 in 107 games with nine home runs and 65 RBIs. He
also stole 25 bases.
Damato's career was put on hold at the end of 1942 as military
service beckoned. He served in Europe with the 401st Glider
Infantry Regiment and was wounded at Bastogne and taken
prisoner. Sergeant Damato spent the remainder of the war at
He returned home in late 1945 and resumed his playing career
with Hutchinson of the Western Association, batting .324 with 85
RBIs. He was with Des Moines of the Western League in 1947 and
advanced to Nashville of the Southern Association in 1948.
Damato was batting .280 for the Vols when he suffered a broke
hand as the result of being hit by a pitch on August 3.
Damato was back with Nashville in 1949 and remained with the
club until 1951. He was with Oklahoma City of the Texas League
from 1952 to 1955.
Created March 28, 2008.
Copyright © 2015 Gary Bedingfield (Baseball
in Wartime). All Rights Reserved.