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Dizzy Sutherland

Ballplayers Wounded in Combat


Date and Place of Birth: April 9, 1922 Washington, DC
Date and Place of Death:    August 21, 1979 Washington, DC
Baseball Experience: Major League
Position: Pitcher
Rank: Private First-Class
Military Unit: US Army
Area Served: Mediterranean Theater of Operations

Howard A “Dizzy” Sutherland was born on April 9, 1922 in Washington, DC. He worked as a cab driver before entering military service with the Army at Fort Myer, Virginia, on January 25, 1943, and trained with the airborne forces.  

In September 1943, Sutherland took part in the airborne assault at Salerno, Italy. His battalion was misdropped behind German lines and he was wounded in three places by shrapnel. Thirty minutes after landing he was captured. He spent the remainder of the war in a POW camp in Germany and by the time he was liberated in 1945 he had lost 100 pounds.  

Sutherland returned home to Washington, DC where continued to drive a cab and play semi-pro baseball at the weekend. In 1949, at the age of 27, he was scouted by Spencer Abbott and signed to pitch for the Charlotte Hornets – a Washington Senators’ farm team in the Class B Tri-State League.  

Sutherland had an outstanding rookie season with the Hornets, posting an 18-10 won-loss record with a 3.22 ERA. He was called up to the Senators in September 1949, and made his only major league appearance on September 20, 1949 in a start against the St. Louis Browns. He was taken out in the second inning with the bases loaded and none out, having given up eight runs on two hits and six walks and was charged with the loss.  

Sutherland returned to Charlotte in 1950 and though again recalled by the Senators in September and with them for spring training 1951, he did not make another appearance. Sutherland continued to pitch for the Hornets in 1951 and ended his professional career with the Richmond Colts in the Piedmont League in 1953.  

Dizzy Sutherland passed away on August 21, 1979 in Washington, DC. He was 57 years old and is buried at Cheltenham Veteran's Cemetery in Cheltenham, Maryland.

Date Added May 15, 2020

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