The Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame’s advisory committee has released its candidates for the Class of 2017, and enshrinement will be conducted by voting from local fans.
The Committee also announced that fans will select the three that collect the most votes. Ballots may now be cast in person at all remaining RiverDogs home game’s leading up to the induction pregame on Sunday, August 20. Ballots can also be cast online at riverdogs.com or by following the link HERE.
The Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame is coordinated and operated by the Charleston RiverDogs. An advisory committee consisting of knowledgeable local volunteers was created to come up with the names as potential nominees. The Hall of Fame is located inside Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park.
The finalists, in alphabetical order, for the Class of 2017:
Joe Clayton – Joe Clayton is a native of Charleston and is currently one of the oldest members of American Legion Post 147 on James Island. In 1968, he was instrumental in beginning the American Legion Baseball program at Post 147, serving as the baseball manager responsible for travel, meals and transportation to games. He also served on the state-wide American Legion Baseball committee for many years. After a long tenure as a member of the committee, he became the State Commissioner for American Legion Baseball in South Carolina in the 1990s. As commissioner, he was responsible for scheduling all of the games in the state, as well as working closely with the National Committee in Indianapolis. He remained active in supporting American Legion Baseball until the age of 85, when he “retired.”
Tim Cook – Middleton High grad who pitched at Newberry (’77-’80); records include most wins/season (11), shutouts season/career, and strikeouts/season; named All-State, All-District 6, All-Area 7, and NAIA 1st Team All-American in ’77; played on the USA World Cup Team, winning a silver mdel and played in the ’77 NAIA World Series; drafted in the 5th round by the Brewers (’80); reached AAA for the Brewers and Padres; has helped local American legion and high school teams; member of the Newberry Athletic Hall of Fame.
John Couch – A St. Andrew’s High product who played minor league baseball for the Charleston White Sox (1958-63); attended Baseball Umpire Development school and in St. Petersburg, Fla.; umpired classes A (Western Carolina League) and AA professional baseball in addition to American Legion and college baseball; was an umpire during the 1975 NCAA College World Series; a local CPA.
Philip A. “Phil” Hartig (Citadel Class of 2000) - The most prolific hitter in Citadel baseball history, Hartig established 14 offensive records and earned first team All-Southern Conference honors all four years. He was the league’s Player of the Year in 2001, and was also the 1998 SoCon Freshman of the Year and twice earned All-America honors from Collegiate Baseball (second team in 2000; third team in 2001). Hartig finished his career ranked fourth in the NCAA career total bases and seventh in career hits. Among his many school records, he holds the career marks in games played (239), runs (230), hits in a season (99) and career (360), doubles (76), RBI in a season (86) and career (290), slugging percentage (.673) and fielding percentage (.989). He owns a career batting average of .367, and holds the mark with 17 home runs in a season and for his career, he belted 64 home runs (second best is Anthony Jenkins’ 32). Hartig played on Fred Jordan-coached teams that went a combined 155-88 and started on teams that advanced to three NCAA regionals, won three Southern Conference Tournament titles and two SoCon regular season titles. Hartig was drafted in the 24th round by the Florida Marlins and was enshrined in The Citadel Athletic Hall of Fame in 2008.
Ryan Johnson – A standout pitcher for the College of Charleston who pitched in 2002 and 2004 (was out with injury in ’03). Finished with a career record of 23-3 with a 3.26 ERA as he led the Cougars to their first NCAA Regional appearance in 2004. His overall winning percentage of .885 ranks second all-time and his perfect 12-0 season in 2004 earned him Southern Conference Pitcher of the Year honors. He was a first Team All-Conference pick in 2002 and 2004 and was a CBI All-American Honorable Mention in 2004. He finished 10th in the NCAA in wins in 2004 (12). He is a native of Fort Pierce, Fla., and attended Indian River Community College before transferring to The College. He currently works for the Mt. Pleasant Recreation Department.
Bo Parks – A Summerville baseball standout who was inducted into the Dorchester School District 2 Hall of Fame in 2000; he played on Summerville’s 1978 and ’79 state championship baseball and football teams; posted a 56-6 career pitching record, with seven career no-hitters. He also holds the state record for consecutive wins in a season with a 16-0 record in ’79; in the all-time state rankings, he has four career no-hitters (T-1st), most consecutive shutouts, 4 (T-3rd), most consecutive wins, 20 (5th), and most strikeouts in a game, 20 in 1978 (T-2nd).
R.J. Swindle – R.J. Swindle etched his name in the Charleston Southern record book thanks to a brilliant 2003 season. He set the still-standing single -season records for wins (10) and strikeouts (140) en route to finishing the year 10-5 with an impeccable 2.21 ERA. His 18 starts that season are also tied for the most made by any CSU pitcher. He capped his illustrious collegiate career as the Bucs’ all-time leader in wins (24), while placing second in innings pitched (349.2) and games started (51). The crowning moment of Swindle’s career came on the international level. The Vancouver, Canada native has suited up for the Canadian National Team in the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, the 2012 World Baseball Classic Qualifier in Germany, and the 2013 World Baseball Classic here in the United States. Swindle has also enjoyed two stints in the Major Leagues, a three-game run with the eventual World Series Champion Philadelphia Phillies in 2008 and a six-game stretch with the Milwaukee Brewers the following year. After starting his pro career in the Boston Red Sox organization, Swindle signed with the New York Yankees, and found himself 20 minutes from the CSU campus pitching for the Charleston RiverDogs. Swindle posted one of the better seasons of his career with the RiverDogs, going 4-2 with two saves and a 0.61 ERA over 44.1 innings. Swindle wrapped up a nine-year career in 2012, pitching with the Memphis Redbirds, the St. Louis Cardinals’ AAA affiliate.
--CHARLESTON BASEBALL HALL OF FAME--
CHARLESTON BASEBALL HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES
2016 – Ted Byrne
Joseph P. Riley, Jr.
2015 – Pete Ayoub
2014 – Reese Havens
Billy Swails, Jr.
2013 – Steven Jackson
2012 – Gettys Glaze
2011 – Bill Ackerman
2010 – Lee Glaze
2009 – John Dodds, Jr.
W.S. “Bull” Durham
2008 – Bryce Florie
2007 – 1955 Cannon Street YMCA All-Star Team
1990 Citadel World Series Team
2006 – Ty Cline
2005 – John Candelaria
2004 – David Cone
2003 – Willie Randolph