Friday, July 29, 2016

Charleston Riverdogs Press Release: The Charleston Hall of Fame

Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame
to Induct Five New Members 
on Aug. 25
Class of 2016 includes Mayor Riley, Mike Veeck, Ted Byrne and former Cougars
Chris Campbell, Nick Chigges



CHARLESTON, SC – Former Charleston Mayor Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Charleston, RiverDogs president emeritus Mike Veeck, broadcaster Ted Byrne, and College of Charleston standouts Chris Campbell and Nick Chigges highlight the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame’s Class of 2016.


Byrne, Campbell and Chigges were selected by fan voting while Riley and Veeck were chosen by the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame Committee.


The five, which represent the largest class in the 14-year history of the Charleston Baseball Hall of Fame, will be enshrined on August 25prior to the RiverDogs’ home game against the Columbia Fireflies, which begins at 7:05 pm.

Riley, among the nation’s most loved politicians who guided the Holy City for an unprecedented 40 years (Dec. 1975-Jan. 2016), is arguably Charleston’s No. 1 baseball fan. A native Charlestonian, Riley graduated from The Citadel in 1964 and the University of South Carolina School of Law in 1967. Among his many projects as mayor was the completion of a $19 million baseball field on the banks of the Ashley River in which Charleston City Council appropriately named Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park. As mayor, Riley has been honored with numerous citations, including the Order of the Palmetto, South Carolinian of the Year and The National Medal of Arts as presented by President Barack Obama

Veeck, the son of Baseball Hall of Famer Bill Veeck, brought his innovative “Fun Is Good” mantra to the RiverDogs when the club moved from College Park to Riley Park in the late 1990s and has kept that momentum going. Focusing on wholesome, family entertainment with major emphasis on customer and community service, Veeck directed the RiverDogs front office as they continually set attendance records that hovered around the 300,000 per year mark. A master showman and promoter who has been referred to as a “maverick” owner due to his wacky promotions, Veeck is a highly sought-after speaker on the national level.

Byrne, the South Atlantic League’s 1984 Broadcaster of the Year, brought Charleston its first sports talk radio show and has been a sports broadcaster since 1967. He currently is the Operations and Traffic Manager for Kirkman Broadcasting and oversees all six of their radio stations. In 1984 he was named South Carolina’s Broadcaster of the Year. After Hurricane Hugo in 1989, Ted was part of a group that won his industry’s highest award, The Peabody Award, which recognizes distinguished and meritorious public service by radio and television broadcasters. Byrne has been the “voice” of The Citadel and College of Charleston, and has worked TV broadcasts for Fox Sports, SportSouth, Comcast and ESPN. He twice broadcasted the SAL All-Star Game (once in Charleston and once in Columbia), and also did play-by-play for Georgia Southern men's basketball and baseball from 1997-05 before returning to Charleston.

A second baseman who played for CofC from 2004-07, Campbell ranks as the program’s all-time leader in games played, hits, doubles and RBIs. In 2007, Campbell led the nation in RBIs per game with 1.41. His 87 RBIs in 2005 ranked second all-time in Southern Conference history behind CofC’s Matt Leeds’ mark of 88. Campbell’s 290 career RBIs are tied for first in SoCon history, while his 355 career hits are tied for second in the league record books. Campbell was the 2004 SoCon Freshman of the Year, while earning First Team All-SoCon honors in 2005 and Second Team All-Conference accolades in 2004, 2006 and 2007. In 2005, Campbell was named an ABCA First Team All-American, Baseball America Second Team All-American and Collegiate Baseball/Louisville Slugger Third Team All-American. He was selected for the Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-America team in 2004. He helped Charleston to three NCAA Regional appearances and a Super Regional berth in 2006.

College of Charleston’s Chigges was a two-time Southern Conference Pitcher of the Year and collected first team All-Conference accolades in 2006 and 2007. Named co-MVP of the 2006 SoCon Tournament, Chigges earned second team Collegiate Baseball/Louisville Slugger and NCBWA All-America honors in 2006 and second team ABCA All-American recognition in 2007. He had a 31-5 career record and a .861 winning percentage, and when he finished, the 31 wins ranked first all-time at CofC and fifth in SoCon history. He was named to the 2006 Kentucky Regional All-Tournament team after a complete-game, 13-strikeout performance in the win over Ball State in the semifinals. A 2004 member of Collegiate Baseball’s All-America Freshman Team, Chigges was drafted by the NY Yankees and played for the 2008 Charleston RiverDogs.

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