1972: Bobby Spell (Men's Fastpitch)

Players were Spell-bound after they faced hard-throwing pitcher Bobby Spell in an ASA national championship. That’s because getting an earned run off Spell was nearly impossible. In fact, in 205 1/3 innings of national championship play Spell allowed only eight earned runs and struck out 258 batters for an ERA of 0.27. In his first 159 1/3 innings of national championship play, Spell allowed only one earned run. Spell won 18 of 27 games in national championship play and was a four-time first-team All-America: 1958, 1959, 1960 and 1968. He played for some of the nation’s top men’s teams including the Clearwater, FL Bombers, Stratford, CT Raybestos Cardinals and his hometown of Lake Charles, LA. Spell made his first appearance in national championship play in 1956 for Baton Rouge, LA, going 1-2 but he didn’t allow any earned runs, fanned 26 in 21 innings and allowed seven hits. Between 1957-1960, Spell won 14 of 17 games in national championship play. He played for Clearwater in 1957, 1959 and 1960 and for Lake Charles in 1958 when he went 5-2 in the national tourney, allowing two earned runs with 70 strikeouts and 21 hits. Spell had a regular season record of 58-4 with 1,039 strikeouts and only 67 walks. Spell played in the 1961 (1-1) and 1962 (0-2) nationals, then didn’t play in another national tourney until 1968, winning two of three games with 14 strikeouts in 21 innings. His last appearance in a national tourney was 1970 (0-1). On June 1, 2002 Spell was the first of 11 people inducted into the Louisiana Fast Pitch Hall of Fame. Spell passed away July 2, 2002. He was 72 years-old.