More than 40 city natives who signed professional contracts will be inducted into the Eau Claire Baseball Hall of Fame.
The 41 men will be honored at the second annual Hall of Fame banquet at 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 1, at Florian Gardens. A bronze plaque listing their names, the year they signed and the Major League team that signed them will be erected in 2010.
The Hall of Fame is at Henry Aaron Plaza outside Carson Park baseball stadium.
The keynote speaker for the banquet will be Harmon Killebrew, a former Minnesota Twins slugger and a member of the National Baseball Hall of Fame.
Also being inducted, as previously announced, will be Andy Pafko, a Boyceville native who played 17 seasons in the Major Leagues and was a four-time All-Star.
The list of Eau Claire natives playing professional ball includes many players from the 1940s and 1950s but spans nearly 70 years, including Ken West from 1933 and Kelly Werner, who signed in 2000 with the Milwaukee Brewers.
A number of the players reached Class AAA ball, or one level below the majors, including Paul Ausman, Rick Hense, Dennis O'Melia and Ron Stewart.
Several city natives signed with the old Boston or Milwaukee Braves, who had a Northern League team in Eau Claire. Some of them also were on the city pro team during periods when it was not affiliated with a Major League club.
The Hall of Fame list also includes three players who previously were inducted, Vic Johnson, Tom Poquette and Harvey Tomter. Johnson and Poquette were the only city natives to reach the Major Leagues. Tomter was a longtime Eau Claire Cavaliers coach.
The banquet will be preceded by a social hour, silent auction and baseball memorabilia display beginning at 5:30 p.m. The cost is $55.
Ticket sales end Jan. 22. Seating is limited.
All proceeds from the banquet benefit the Hall of Fame, which was founded in 2007 by the History Committee.
City natives in the minor leagues
Paul Ausman, 1973, Milwaukee Brewers
Joe Beaulieu, 1954, St. Louis Browns
Connie Bradison, 1965, Minnesota Twins
Ron Buckli, 1953, Baltimore Orioles
Gary Finch, 1965, Minnesota Twins
Jim Ganther, 1953, Boston Braves
Tom Garnett, 1959, Washington Senators
Harold "Hud" Gelein, 1958, Milwaukee Braves
Jim Geske, 1948, Boston Braves
Wally Geske, 1949, St. Louis Browns
Norm Gutsch, 1951, Chicago White Sox
Werner Haas, 1942, unaffiliated
Bob Hall, 1966, Cincinnati Reds
Bill Hamilton, 1952, St. Louis Browns
Rick Hense, 1965, Washington Senators
Harold "Hod" Hoepner, 1941, unaffiliated
Bob Hoff, 1941, unaffiliated
Jon Huth, 1988, Texas Rangers
Jerry "Rosy" Johnson, 1955, Milwaukee Braves
Meriland "Pearly" Johnson, 1958, Kansas City A's
Vic Johnson, 1942, unaffiliated
Wally Johnson, 1942, unaffiliated
Don Jordan, 1951, Boston Braves
Harold "Diz" Kronenberg, 1946, St. Louis Cardinals
Ted Lahner, 1958, Milwaukee Braves
Vic Larson, 1942, unaffiliated
Dick Lund, 1942, unaffiliated
Harry "Bugs" Mason, 1947, unaffiliated
Dennis O'Melia, 1953, Milwaukee Braves
Tom Poquette, 1970, Kansas City Royals
Carson "Bill" Proctor, 1948, New York Giants
Don Rasmus, 1953, St. Louis Cardinals
Jim Schlewitz, 1952, St. Louis Browns
Ron Stewart, 1969, New York Mets
Jim Stolp, 1958, Kansas City A's
Harvey Tomter, 1952, New York Giants
Kelly Werner, 2000, Milwaukee Brewers
Ken West, 1933, unaffiliated
Scott Wold, 1971, Minnesota Twins
Jim Woodford, 1952, Boston Braves
Roger Zahnow, 1955, Milwaukee Braves