FSL Hall of Fame to induct Wood, Wells

League to honor MiLB's O'Conner, ump Marsh, manager Elia, others

Righty Kerry Wood spent his best Minor League season in Florida with the Daytona Cubs in 1996. (Harry How/Getty Images)

By Florida State League | October 1, 2014 5:26 PM

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- The Florida State League Hall of Fame Committee announced today the 2014 Class of Inductees. This is the sixth Induction Ceremony. The 2014 Class will be inducted into the Florida State League Hall of Fame on Nov. 11, 2014 at the Plaza Resort and Spa in Daytona Beach. The 2014 class is listed below with a short biography.


Paul Gilliford -- Paul Gant Gilliford was born in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania. He was a left handed pitcher who appeared in two Major League Games for the 1967 Baltimore Orioles during the course of a five year (1965-1969) career. In Gilliford's second pro season, 1966, he led the Florida State League in earned run average (1.27), and posted a 16-3 won-lost record for the Miami Marlins. In the Florida State League he is tied for the Most Shutouts (9) in a Season with Stanley Karpinski, and he holds the record for the Most Consecutive Shutouts (5) from August 13 to August 27, 1966. The record of Most Consecutive Shutout Innings also belongs to Paul with 48.1, from August 9-August 27, 1966 while he was with the Miami Marlins. Gilliford also pitched in the historic 29 inning game involving the Miami Marlins and the St. Petersburg Cardinals at Al Lang Field. He pitched innings 15 through 25, without giving up a run, striking out seven, walking two, and scattering seven hits. Paul had started the previous day going seven innings, giving him a total of 18 innings pitched in the course of two days. Final score was Miami 4, St. Petersburg 3. Gilliford retired from the game in 1969.  

Kerry Wood -- Kerry was drafted by the Chicago Cubs as the fourth overall selection in the 1995 Draft. He spent three years playing in the minor leagues, and his best season in the minors came in 1996 with the Daytona Cubs.   It was there that he posted a 10-2 record for the Daytona Cubs. His first Major League appearance was on April 12, 1998. On May 6, his fifth career start, he threw a one-hit, no walk, 20-strikeout shutout against the Houston Astros. This tied the Roger Clemens' record for strikeouts in a nine-inning game, and it also broke the single game rookie record of 18 strikeouts in 1980, held by Bill Gullickson. This outing became one of the most dominating pitching performances in major league history. He won the 1998 National League Rookie of the Year. He holds the record of fastest to reach 1,000 strikeouts in MLB history in innings pitched (853 IP), and fastest to reach 1,000 strikeouts in appearances (134 games). Wood also played with the Cleveland Indians and the New York Yankees before returning to the Chicago Cubs for a second time. He was a 2 time All-Star (2003 and 2008). Kerry retired on May 18, 2012 with the Chicago Cubs.


James Fuller -- James debut was with the 1970 Miami Marlins as an outfielder in 1970 and hit .247/.323/.405 for the Florida State League titlists. In 1971, Fuller returned and did even better to lead the team (now the Miami Orioles) to another pennant.   He had 33 homers, hitting .326/.441/.611 with 105 runs, 110 RBI and 90 walks. James had 17 outfield assists that tied for second in the FSL and he also set a franchise record for runs and RBI's. While in the Florida State League, he made the Honorary All-Star Team, won MVP honors, and tied Ed Levy's 21 year old record for most homeruns in a Season. Through 2013, no one had broken Fuller's home run record. He played two seasons with the Baltimore Orioles and one season with the Houston Astros.

Vernon Wells -- Vernon was drafted in Round 1 as the fifth overall pick by the Toronto Blue Jays in 1997. Wells spent several years as a top prospect with the Blue Jays organization. He was with the Dunedin Blue Jays in 1999 and won the Florida State League MVP. He made his major league debut in 1999. He is a three time AL All-Star (2003, 2006, 2010), has been awarded three Gold Glove Awards (2004, 2005, 2006), and one Silver Slugger Award (2003). He has also played for the Los Angeles Angels and the New York Yankees before becoming a free agent. He is second all time for the Blue Jays in career hits (1529), home runs (223), doubles (339), runs (789), RBI (813) and total bases (2597). Wells has also been inducted in to the Baseball Humanitarians Hall of Fame.


Lee Elia

MANAGERIAL CAREER: Lee has had a very distinguished professional baseball career. Lee began his managing career in 1975 with the Spartanburg Phillies (Single-A). In 1977, he received a promotion to the AA Reading Phillies in the Eastern League. He was named Manager of the Phillies AAA affiliate, the Oklahoma City 89ers, in 1979. They finished with a 72-63 record and won the west division. In 1982 he was hired as the manager of the Chicago Cubs who finished the season with a 73-89 record and finished fifth out of six in the NL East which ended his tenure in Chicago. He was then hired as manager for the AAA Portland Beavers (Phillies Organization) in the Pacific Coast League with a 62-78 record then hired as a bench Coach for the Phillies the next season. He continued to manage in 1987. Sixty-one games into the season he was hired as manager for the 29-32 Phillies and led the team to an 80-82 record to place 4th in the NL East. From 1990-91 he was named manager of the Clearwater Phillies (Florida State League) ending with a 50-87 record then finished 81-49 the next season. In 1992 he was hired as the manager of the Phillies AAA affiliate Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Red Barons of the International League leading the team to an 84-58 record before retiring. Lee is currently a Special Assistant to the GM, Player Development for the Atlanta Braves.

PLAYING CAREER: Lee played most of his career through the Minor League system. He was signed as an undrafted free agent to the Philadelphia Phillies in 1958 as a shortstop and played eleven seasons in the minor leagues, nine of those seasons being in AAA. He played in the Phillies minor league system for six years totaling 72 home runs, about 300 RBI's and a .260 combined batting average. In 1965 Lee was signed by the Chicago White Sox organization to play AAA the whole season. On the roster with the 1966 Chicago White Sox season for 80 games in the 1966 season, Elia played in 77 of those where he hit .205 with three home runs and 22 RBI's. He played the '67 season in the minors with the Chicago Cubs and finished with 14 home runs, 59 RBI's and a batting average of .267. The next season he was called up to the Cubs Major League roster appearing in fifteen games with only three RBI's and a .176 batting average. After the season he played in twenty AAA games, three with the Cubs and seventeen with the Yankees. Shortly after, he stopped playing baseball until coming back at the age of 35 in 1973 and playing AAA ball with the Phillies. However, he only appeared in 16 games and then retired. He was very efficient in the field with a career fielding percentage of about .940. Lee was inducted into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame in 2000

Richie Zisk

PLAYING CAREER: Richie was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates out of Seton Hall University in the third round of the 1967 MLB Draft. He was 18 years old. He made his major league debut on September 8, 1971 replacing Roberto Clemente in right field in the eighth inning of Pittsburgh's 10-1 victory over the Chicago Cubs. He got a single in his first major league at-bat. In his rookie season he batted .324 with ten home runs. Richie made seventeen appearances with the 1972 Pirates. On June 9, 1974, he hit for the cycle in a 14-1 victory over the San Francisco Giants and for the season, he led the Pirates with 100 RBI's while also hitting 17 home runs. Following the 1976 season, the Pirates traded Zisk to the Chicago White Sox. His best season was in 1977, his lone year with the White Sox, when he hit 30 home runs and had 101 RBIs in addition to a .290 batting average. Richie started in left field for the American League in the 1977 All-Star game. Zisk became a free agent at the end of the season, and signed with the Texas Rangers. He batted clean-up, and started in right field at the 1978 All-Star Game at San Diego Stadium. For the season, he batted .262 with 22 home runs and 85 RBIs splitting time between left field, right field and designated hitter. After three seasons in Texas, Zisk was traded to the Seattle Mariners. He was the AL Comeback Player of the Year in 1981. His first season in Seattle, he batted .311 with sixteen home. After three seasons as the Mariners' designated hitter, he retired after the 1983 season.  

MANAGERIAL CAREER: He was a hitting coach for the Chicago Cubs in Daytona for several years. In 2000 and 2005, he was the manager of the Daytona Cubs, winning the Florida State League Championship in 2000. The Daytona Cubs retired Richie's number 22 on July 20, 2007. Richie was inducted into the National Polish-American Sports Hall of Fame in 2004. 


Pat O'Conner -- Pat began his baseball career as Administrative Assistant with the Vero Beach Dodgers of the Florida State League in 1981. He then spent the 1982 season as General Manager of the Greenwood Pirates (South Atlantic League) and followed that stint with two seasons as Assistant General Manager of the Beaumont Golden Gators (Texas League). After 18 months as Director of Athletic Marketing and Promotion for Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas, O'Conner returned to baseball in November 1986. At that time, he became head of Florida Operations for the Houston Astros and served as general manager of the Osceola Astros of the Florida State League from 1986-1993. Pat served on the league's Budget Committee, Presidential Transition team and was named the Florida State League Executive of the Year in 1988, as Osceola posted the best record in the league at 83-54. Pat has spent 32 years in professional baseball, including the last 21 in the Minor League Baseball (MiLB) office. He joined the Minor League Baseball staff in May 1993 as Chief Operating Officer and added the title of Vice President, Administration in December 1995. Pat was elected the 11th president of Minor League Baseball in December 2007 and was re-elected for a second term in December 2011. During O'Conner's time at Minor League Baseball, the organization has experienced staggering increases in revenue among its 160 teams. Under Pat's leadership, Minor League Baseball also set a new all-time attendance record in 2008, attracting more than 43 million fans that season. O'Conner is credited with negotiating three successive Professional Baseball Agreements with Major League Baseball on behalf of Minor League Baseball, the latest of which runs through the 2020 season. His achievements with Minor League Baseball also include developing, administering and overseeing the operation of the Professional Baseball Umpire Corporation (PBUC). O'Conner also negotiated collective bargaining agreements with the Association of Minor League Umpires (AMLU) and oversaw the negotiations that resulted in a five-year agreement lasting through 2016.

Additionally, Pat brought together Minor League Baseball clubs in packaging digital rights, entering into an agreement with Major League Baseball Advanced Media (MLBAM) in a landmark Internet Management Rights Agreement (IMRA) between the organizations in December 2008. Under Pat's guidance, Minor League Baseball announced a first-ever diversity initiative in 2009, whereby it executes programs aimed at diversifying the ownership, executive and staff personnel, fan base and business-to-business relationships within the industry. As a result of his diversity initiative and efforts, Pat was named the recipient of the third Allan H. (Bud) Selig Mentoring Award in 2010. Pat serves on Major League Baseball's Diversity Oversight Committee and the Commissioner's On-Field Diversity Task Force. Pat also is credited with the 2012 formation of MiLB Enterprises, a bundled national marketing and branding company encompassing all 160 MiLB teams. A native of Grove City, Ohio, O'Conner received a degree in economics and finance from Wittenberg University in Springfield, Ohio, and a master's in Sports Administration from Ohio University in Athens, Ohio. Pat and his wife, Teri, reside in St. Petersburg, Florida.  

John Timberlake -- Philadelphia Phillies Director of Florida Operations and Clearwater Threshers General Manager John Timberlake is the longest continuous tenured executive currently in the Florida State League. His 29 years of service combined with his vision and expertise will be rewarded this fall when he is inducted in to the Florida State League Hall of Fame.

"Having spent my entire professional career as a member of the Florida State League, I am truly honored to be inducted into the FSL Hall of Fame," said Timberlake. "It is a humbling experience to be included in this elite group of players, field staff, executives and umpires, some of the finest names ever to grace our great game and National Pastime. I am so thankful to FSL President Chuck Murphy and the league members who have honored me with this incredible induction into the Florida State League Hall. It is my hope to continue to serve the FSL for many years to come."

Timberlake was selected as a Presidential nomination by Florida State League President Chuck Murphy and will join the 2014 Hall of Fame Class in November. "John is more than qualified to enter the FSL Hall of Fame as he has contributed his expertise and knowledge to this league for years," said Murphy. "We often comment on the fact that the main core of his staff has been with him a long time and that has made for a lot of continuity and expertise."

In 1986, Timberlake joined the Phillies as an administrative assistant for his first job in baseball. He was named the Business Manager of the Clearwater Phillies in 1987 and was promoted to General Manager of the club in 1989. He also served as the Minor League Business Manager of the Phillies. Timberlake was named to his current roles as Director of Florida Operations in 1996 and General Manager of the Clearwater Threshers in 2005.

During his tenure, Timberlake has been named Florida State League Executive of the Year three times - in 1990, 2005 and 2007. He was instrumental in the Clearwater Threshers being named by Baseball America the Class-A recipient of the 2013 Bob Freitas Award, which is presented to the organization with the best overall operations at each level of Minor League Baseball. The Threshers accepted the award at baseball's annual Winter Meetings in Orlando, Fla.

Timberlake was instrumental in securing the financing for, and the design and construction of Bright House Field. He has also been recognized as the YMCA Suncoast YMCA Volunteer of the year in 1992, received the 2004 Chamber of Commerce Good Neighbor Award, the 2005 Humane Society Good Citizenship Award and the 2011 Clearwater Chamber ALL STAR in the Community Award.

Timberlake has served, or is currently serving on the Board of Directors for: Florida State League of Professional Baseball Clubs, Clearwater Regional Chamber of Commerce, Suncoast Family YMCA, Clearwater For Youth, Greater Tampa Bay March of Dimes and Ruth Eckerd Hall.


Randy Marsh -- Randy Marsh began his second season as Major League Baseball's Director of Major League Umpires in 2012. Randy became an Umpire Supervisor for Major League Baseball in 2010 after more than forty years of professional umpiring experience, including twenty-nine at the Major League level. Marsh started his umpiring career in 1968 in the minor leagues. He was in the Florida State League in 1970 and 1971. Marsh joined the Major League staff in 1981 after umpiring in the minors. The former National League umpire worked four All-Star Games (1985, 88, 96, 2006), five Division Series, eight League Championship Series and five World Series (1990, 97, 99, 2003, 06), including serving as the Crew Chief in 2006. Randy was also part of the crew that umpired the Opening Series 2000 in Tokyo, Japan between the Chicago Cubs and New York Mets.

Marsh, who began umpiring Little League games when he was fifteen, has served as an instructor at Major League Baseball's inaugural Umpire Camps (MLBUC.com), held at MLB's Urban Youth Academy in Compton, California.   Randy was much involved in developing the umpiring profession during his time as a major league umpire. He was also a part of the first Joint Committee on Training, and played a role in the collaboration on the first Major League Umpire Manual.

Marsh graduated from Covington Holmes High School in 1967, and attended the University of Kentucky and the Al Somers Umpire School before serving in the U.S. Army Reserve from 1968-74. In addition, he is involved in the D.A.R.E. program with local police and schools and the Kid Care ID program.

The ceremony is open to the public and tickets are $75.00 per person. Dress is cocktail attire. More information will be available closer to the event. Please call 386-252-7479, or email fslbaseball@cfl.rr.com  with any questions. 

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