McQueen elected to WSL Hall of Fame
The Wisconsin State Baseball League will honor its best later this month. Janesville's Bill McQueen will be a big part of the ceremony.
McQueen will be one of six former players inducted into the WSL Hall of Fame. He will be joined by R.D. Boschulte of Madison; Troy Evers and Steve Schultz of the Green Bay Blue Ribbons; Tom Gardner of the Sheboygan A's, and Mike Pierce of the Addison Braves, as the state's prestigious semi-pro baseball league inducts its 2014 hall of fame class.
The WSL Hall of Fame banquet will be held Saturday, Jan. 25 at the Sheboygan Yacht Club in Sheboygan. Dinner is at 7 p.m., after a 5:30 p.m. social hour. The induction ceremony begins at 8 p.m. Cost is $30 and is open to the public.
McQueen played 19 seasons for the Aces and is second all-time in the WSL in wins and strikeouts behind former teammate and 2007 WSL Hall of Fame charter member Tom Klawitter. The right-handed-throwing McQueen appeared in 172 games and posted a 68-60 record with 12 shutouts and six saves. He led the league in ERA (2.32) and winning percentage (4-0) in 1988 and helped the Aces qualify for the postseason in 1989, 1990 and 1993. McQueen's 4.12 career earned run average ranks second all-time among pitchers with 800-plus innings.
“For me, it was all about the competition and camaraderie,” McQueen said. “I always wanted the ball and didn't care what the situation was during the game. I wanted to pitch.
“I think what I'm most proud of is that I played a lot of baseball and had some success between the ages of 30 and 50, when everybody I was playing against was younger and using aluminum bats.”
McQueen had several memorable moments on the mound but said his no-hitter against Oshkosh in 1991 tops them all. He pitched or played against Eric Hinske, Scott Spiezio and Jarrod Washburn—who all went on to Major League careers.
Pat Campbell, a 2011 WSL Hall of Fame inductee, caught McQueen for 15 years. Campbell said McQueen was a “bulldog” who thrived under pressure.
“Queenie was a hard-nosed competitor who, in his early 30s, was still as good as any pitcher in our league,” Campbell said. “He had a three-quarter delivery and featured a really good slider that, when he was on, was nearly unhittable.
“He played linebacker in high school and in junior college, and that's how he pitched—just a very, very tough competitor.”
McQueen will be the sixth former Aces player to be inducted into the hall of fame that will now have 33 members. Klawitter, Campbell, Jim Coulter, Dan Davis and Tom Imhoff previously were inducted.
“There wasn't a better pitching staff in the league than ours, and I don't think people realize how good our league was,” McQueen said. “I think the fact that we (McQueen, Klawitter and Davis) were a little bit older and had a lot of experience, showed through against the younger players.
“I just hoped to go out there each and every time and give our team a chance to win. I'm very proud to be going into the hall and to be able to join some of my great teammates that made all of the long four-game weekends worthwhile.”