Pictured here are grandsons Will and Asher with Arizona Diamondbacks star pitcher Brandon Webb. Brandon is an Ashland native who still makes his off season home here in Ashland. He is two or three years younger than Benji but they played high school ball together on Ben's senior year and later that summer in French Harmon's Ashland Athletics. The A's went to the Connie Mack regional tournament that year in Memphis, TN representing the state of Kentucky.
Brandon played in our Ashland American Little League, and his first season (as an 8 year old) he played on my Adkins Insurance Agency team - coached by Rob Francis and David May and helped the team win the Minor League Championship in 1986. He was a member of the Ashland American State Little League Championship team as an 11 year old in 1988. He attended UK and played baseball there, and after he developed the most wicked sinker ball in the major leagues, his career took off. He won the Cy Young Award as the National League's best pitcher in 2006 and finished second for the same award in 2007 & 2008. This past season he led all National League pitchers in wins and he is always among the league leaders in strike outs.
Will and Asher were thrilled to meet Brandon in person. Will plays for the Diamondbacks in the Boyd County National Little League and wears Brandon's #17 on his uniform. Brandon is one of his sports heroes and he is a great Christian role model for kids who look up to him. I think Will was kind of proud that his dad knows Brandon. Benji said Asher was very excited about getting to meet Brandon, but when he got there he got a case of "lockjaw". Anybody who knows Asher, knows that he's a real talker. Apparently he got a little shy in the presence of the big league pitcher.
Everyone here in the Ashland community is proud of Brandon, both for his great success and for the fine role model he is to the kids.