Joseph Philip DiFabio
- Bats Right, Throws Right
- Height 5' 11", Weight 205 lb.
- School Delta State University
- High School Cranford High School
- Born August 4, 1944
- Died March 21, 2014 in Cranford, NJ USA
While attending Delta State University, pitcher Joe DiFabio went 7-0 with an 0.55 ERA in 1965. He was then chosen by the St. Louis Cardinals in the first round of the inaugural 1965 amateur draft with the 20th overall pick. He was the last first-round pick that year. He played six seasons in the Cardinals system and one year in the Cincinnati Reds chain but never reached the majors. He did spend three seasons in AAA.
DiFabio opened at AA with the '65 Tulsa Oilers but struggled with 17 hits, 13 walks and 15 runs (14 earned) in 16 innings, going 0-2. He split 1966 between the Cedar Rapids Cardinals (11-3, 1.86) and Arkansas Travelers (0-2, 5.57). Had he qualified, he would have been second in the Midwest League in ERA behind Vern Geishert. The 22-year-old right-hander split 1967 between Arkansas (4-5, 3.62) and Tulsa (2-3, 3.65, now a AAA team). He was back down with AA Arkansas for all of 1968 and excelled (13-6, 2.17). He led the Texas League in ERA but lost All-Star honors to Rich Folkers and Santiago Guzman. DiFabio also tied Guzman, Carl Morton, Folkers, Archie Reynolds and Phil Knuckles for the TL lead in victories.
In his first full year at AAA, Joe had a 5-4, 5.29 record for Tulsa in 1969. He was sent back again to Arkansas and again did well, 10-7 with a 3.26 ERA. He was 9th in the TL in ERA. He ended his career with the 1971 Indianapolis Indians, allowing 7 runs in 3 innings and losing both of his starts. His career record was 45-34, 3.28.
Sources: 1967-1971 Baseball Guides