Bo Parks named a finalist for Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame enshrinement

Bo Parks

A Summerville baseball legend is one of this year’s candidates for the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame.

The Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame will induct its 15th class later this summer. The hall’s advisory committee recently released the names of seven candidates and three will earn enshrinement through fan voting.

One of the candidates is Summerville’s Bo Parks.

“I don’t know who nominated me for this but I want to thank them,” Parks said. “Baseball has always meant so much to me so I consider this a big honor.”

Already a member of the Dorchester School District 2 Hall of Fame, he played on Summerville’s 1978 and 1979 state championship baseball and football teams. Parks posted a 56-6 career pitching record that included a state record seven career no-hitters. He also holds the state record for consecutive wins in a season with a 16-0 record in 1979. Two of his losses came in games where he pitched a one-hitter.

Parks ranks among the all-time state leaders for consecutive shutouts (4), consecutive wins (20) and strikeouts in a game (20).

As a Green Wave defensive back, he earned four varsity letters for football.

After high school, Parks spent two years pitching for a junior college before injuries to his throwing arm ended his playing career. He remained around the game by serving as a pitching coach and in that capacity helped other athletes earn spots on college rosters.

From 2000 to 2004, he was the pitching coach for Summerville High School. He helped the Green Wave win the 2003 Class AAAA baseball state championship, a feat the team hadn’t accomplished since he was a student athlete at the school.

Votes can be made online at www.riverdogs.com. Ballots may also be cast in person at all remaining RiverDogs home games leading up to the induction pregame on Aug. 20.

In alphabetical order, the other Class of 2017 finalists are:

Joe Clayton - One of the oldest members of American Legion Post 147 on James Island, Clayton was instrumental in beginning the American Legion baseball program at Post 147 in 1968. He served on the statewide ALB committee for many years before rising to state commissioner in the 1990s.

Tim Cook – A Middleton High School graduate who pitched at Newberry College from 1977-80, Cook earned all-state honors at Middleton. He set school records along the way and later became a NAIA all-American in 1977 before being drafted by the Milwaukee Brewers in 1980.

John Couch - A St. Andrew’s High School product who played minor league baseball for the Charleston White Sox from 1958-63, Couch later became an umpire in the minor leagues and NCAA. Couch was an umpire during the 1975 College World Series.

Phil Hartig - The most productive hitter in Citadel history who set over a dozen school records, Hartig earned either Southern Conference or national honors all four years for the Bulldogs. Hartig was conference player of the year in 2001 and was a Collegiate Baseball all-American twice. He was eventually drafted by the Florida Marlins.

Ryan Johnson - A standout pitcher for the College of Charleston in 2002 and 2004, Johnson was 23-3 with a 3.26 ERA. He earned Southern Conference and national recognition along the way and powered the Cougars to their first NCAA Regional appearance in 2004, going 12-0. He works for the Mt. Pleasant Recreation Department.

R.J. Swindle - A Charleston Southern record holder, Swindle set season records for wins (10) and strikeouts (140) in 2003 and fashioned a 2.21 ERA. The Vancouver native played for the Canadian National Team in the 2008 Olympics and pitched in the big leagues for the Phillies and Brewers in 2008 and 2009.

The hall is coordinated and operated by the Charleston RiverDogs and located inside Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park, the home of the Class A affiliate of the New York Yankees.

It was established in 2003 to recognize the legacy of Charleston baseball. Through the years it has honored standout players, executives, coaches and teams at the youth, collegiate and professional levels. A total of 44 have been inducted.

In 2016, the hall’s largest class was honored, with five new members being selected.