2019 CP-1 Ashland Baseball Hall of Fame class selected

ASHLAND, Ky. – Ten players and coaches have been selected for enshrinement in the 2019 CP-1 Ashland Baseball Hall of Fame next summer.

Eight players and two coaches make up the fifth class that will be part of the Aug. 24, 2019 ceremony in Central Park.

The 1950s era is well represented with youth league coach T.R. Wright, former Ashland Tomcats players Robert Wright, Dick Fillmore and Herb Conley and former Fairview High standout Ed Joseph.

The 1960s era includes former Ashland Tomcat stars Ed Radjunas, Tobey Tolbert and Mike Johnson.

The 1970s era includes former Ashland Tomcat coach Frank Sloan and Tomcat standout Darryl Smith.

The 10-man class will bring the total to 60 former players, coaches and umpires in the CP-1 Ashland Baseball Hall of Fame that started in 2015. Four more 10-man classes will complete the CP-1 Hall of Fame.

Here’s a closer look at each 2019 inductee:

-T.R. Wright was one of the pioneer youth league coaches, a father figure to many of those players, and was instrumental in establishing the first Babe Ruth League and the first American Legion team in Ashland.

-Robert Wright was a late-1950s all-around athlete who was one of the best hitters and overall players of his era. Former teammates raved about his raw hitting ability.

-Dick Fillmore was a crafty Tomcat shortstop and pitcher and another great all-around athlete in the late 1950s who handled himself well with quickness and quick hands.

-Herb Conley, known more in Tomcat country for football as a player and coach, was also a sturdy third baseman and pitcher in the late 1950s who, of course, hit with power.

-Ed Joseph was a star catcher and hitter for Fairview High School who went on to Eastern Kentucky University where he enjoyed all-league status.

-Ed Radjunas threw the first pitcher in Ashland Little League history in 1955, was a three-year starter at third base for the Tomcats from 1961 to 1963, coached two years of Post 76 American Legion in 1968 and 1969 and also played at Marshall.

-Tobey Tolbert, a state champion hurdler, was a baseball star in his youth league days in Little League and Babe Ruth. He played only his senior season for the Tomcats in 1967 but he was the perfect addition on the second of the three state champions.

-Mike Johnson played on the 1963 Ashland American Little League state champions and was on the 1969 Tomcat state runners-up. He also coached many successful seasons in Ashland Babe Ruth.

-Frank Sloan was an outstanding coach for the Tomcats in several sports, including baseball where he directed two regional championship teams. He also was an All-Area coach in soccer and girls basketball.

-Darryl Smith was an excellent left-handed pitcher for the Tomcats who also carried himself well at the plate in the late 1970s at Ashland before going on to a career at Cumberland College. He joins his brother, Dan, in the CP-1 Hall of Fame.

By Mark Maynard

Managing editor of Kentucky Today, the digital newspaper of the Kentucky Baptist Convention, since July 2017. Worked 42 years for The Daily Independent in Ashland, Kentucky, the last 12 as managing editor and editor and the previous 30 before that in the sports department, including 17 years as sports editor. I have been in the business since 1975 with more than 75 writing awards from the Kentucky Press Association. I have also have written eight books, used to run fast but now look more like I have a piano on my back. President of Amy For Africa, a faith-based Christian ministry serving Uganda. I'm a husband to Beth and father to Stephen and Sally, grandfather to Brooks and human to Opie!

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