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Jamie Robinson Roby had the fast-pitch stats: a sub 1.0 earned-run average, a batting average over .450 and two regional titles. But the Hall of Fame was the one hold out.
Not any more.
Roby was inducted in the Fast Pitch Hall of Fame on June 13, an honor long overdue. Playing slow-pitch for Shelby County as a seventh-grader, Roby was an integral part in Shelby County’s first fast-pitch team in 1995, and she graduated in 1997. She’s the first player from SCHS and from the 8th Region to be inducted.
“She’s well deserving for sure,” said SCHS Coach Kelly Cable, who nominated Roby. “She was a dominating player and was well known statewide.”
Roby said she wasn’t completely surprised because she knew she had been nominated, but it was a “nice surprise.”
Roby was named to the All-30th District and All-8th Region teams each year and was named to first-team All-State her junior and senior years.
Cable, who coached Roby in those early fast-pitch days, said the lefty made her mark mostly as a pitcher.
“She could flat bring it, throwing heat,” Cable said. “I remember one game she had about 17, 18 strikeouts.”
In fact, Roby threw 20 Ks in a regional semifinal victory over Trimble County.
Although the game has changed with more players playing year around, Cable said she thinks Roby’s dominance would carry over.
“Even today, no doubt she’d dominate,” Cable said. “She was one of the top two pitchers in the state, along with Jackie Elston [who played at Manual].”
Roby said the hitters have definitely improved since her day.
“They’re a lot better now, but I think if you do it then, you could do it now,” she said. “There are a lot more opportunities for girls to play now than we had.”
One reason Roby was dominant in her day was experience. She started playing fast pitch as 7-year-old in Jeffersontown, winning five of six state titles and advancing to the Southern Regional twice.
Her experience helped Roby pass on tips to her SCHS teammates that hadn’t played as much.
“I think I was able to help,” she said. “Coach Cable had a huge influence because she played baseball, so she knew the game. But I was able to give the players some advice about strategy because the games are a little different. Like when we needed to bunt or play back or play in.”
Roby went on to play at Bellarmine University, leading the team in victories all four years and being tabbed as the team’s MVP her final three seasons.
She went on to help coach in Cincinnati first, and then at Presentation and Sacred Heart in Louisville. She’s now a CPA with Kentucky Associate Electric Cooperatives and lives in Bullitt County.
“I’m about to turn 30, and it’s a huge confidence booster,” she said. “You see kids playing today, doing what you love to do, and it’s helps you think that you could still hang with them.”