SABR

This Week in SABR: July 13, 2012

Here's what we've been up to as of July 13, 2012:

Listen to SABR 42 featured panels online

If you couldn't make it to Minneapolis for SABR 42, or you're ready to relive the awesome week of baseball you had there, check out our coverage of the national convention online at SABR.org/convention. The 42nd annual SABR convention was held June 27-July 1, 2012, at the Marriott City Center, just blocks from Target Field, home of the Minnesota Twins.

We've posted multimedia clips of each SABR 42 featured panel from the Marriott, and you can hear them online or download the MP3 to your computer or mobile device to listen later:

In addition, we're continuing to post more multimedia content from SABR 42 at SABR.org/convention, including:

We'll have more SABR 42 content posted online next week, so stay tuned!

SABR 42 convention feedback survey

We hope you enjoyed our 42nd annual national convention last month in Minneapolis, Minnesota, along with all of our online coverage of the event at http://sabr.org/convention.

If you attended SABR 42, we would appreciate if you took a moment to fill out this survey and shared your feedback with us on the registration, communication, programming and your overall experience of the convention:

http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/sabr42-survey

Click the link above to start the survey. Thank you for your feedback.

Lou Gehrig, Hank Greenberg and one SABR member's quest for accuracy

SABR member Herm Krabbenhoft's diligent research on American League RBI records has been well-chronicled in recent issues of the Baseball Research Journal, and we've published exclusive supplemental material related to Herm's work at SABR.org. At SABR 42, Herm delivered a presentation on Lou Gehrig's single-season record of 184 RBI set in 1931 — and the many scorekeeping errors he found in the official logs.

You can listen to Herm's SABR 42 presentation here in MP3 format: https://sabr.box.com/shared/static/d1b27b72436298dcef2b.mp3 (22:30, 10.3 MB)

Sports Illustrated's John Rosengren (a fellow member) wrote a profile of Herm for SI.com on July 11, 2012. Here's an excerpt of his article:

On June 28 a retired chemist set out to change baseball history. Herm Krabbenhoft, a member of the Society for American Baseball Research, made a presentation at the organization's annual convention in Minneapolis proposing that one of baseball's most notable and long-standing records — Lou Gehrig's single-season American League mark for most runs batted in — is inaccurate.

In 1931, Gehrig drove in 184 runs, a total that has stood as the AL record ever since. Krabbenhoft, though, thinks it should be 185. Why? Because he took it upon himself to spend the past year and a half researching every RBI Gehrig accumulated in his 2,164 career games and found one that appeared to be missing.

On May 3, 1931, Gehrig hit into what appeared to be a routine double play with runners on first and third, but Red Sox second baseman Bobby Reeves threw the ball into leftfield, allowing the Yankees' runner to score. Under the rules at the time (later changed in 1939), the batter was supposed to be credited with a run batted in, but the official scorer failed to award Gehrig the RBI. No one noticed, until Krabbenhoft pointed out the scorer's fateful omission a couple weeks ago.

It's not the first time Krabbenhoft has made such a potentially historic claim. Last year, he discovered a scorekeeping error that denied Detroit Tigers legend Hank Greenberg of an RBI in 1937. Greenberg finished that season with 183 RBIs, one short of Gehrig's established mark, but Krabbenhoft's research would have elevated Greenberg's total to 184, thus tying him with the Iron Horse.

SABR and Retrosheet.org, a database featuring play-by-pay of thousands of old games, have accepted Krabbenhoft's findings; several other outlets, including Baseball-Reference.com, Stats LLC and, most significantly, the Elias Sports Bureau, which compiles official statistics for MLB, have not. All three continue to list Gehrig's total as 184 and Greenberg's as 183.

SABR members Steve Hirdt and Trent McCotter are also quoted in the full article, which you can read here: http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2012/baseball/mlb/07/03/lou-gehrig-john-rosengren/index.html

Kansas City's baseball DNA

The MLB All-Star Game was held Tuesday in Kansas City, and SABR members helped showcase the city's illustrious baseball history in primetime all week.

Brian Burnes of the Kansas City Star delved into not only Kansas City's major league history with the Royals and Athletics, but also the minor league Blues and Negro League Monarchs, as well. Here is an excerpt from the Star's story "Kansas City's baseball DNA" on July 6, 2012, which mentions SABR members Lloyd Johnson, Bill Carle, Harold Dellinger, Larry Lester, Peter Morris, Richard Bogovich and Thomas Busch:

Baseball’s All-Star Game, which will be played Tuesday at Kauffman Stadium, will be a showcase of Kansas City corporate and community spirit.

Which is fine with the lesser-known natives who have been promoting Kansas City baseball for decades and who will continue to observe their unique rituals well after the big game is over. These are the Kansas City baseball collectors, scholars and researchers who see far more than mere diversion in the game.

This group includes [Lloyd] Johnson, whose palpable enthusiasm for baseball history makes even a cemetery visit an occasion for wonder and joy.

And Bill Carle and Harold Dellinger, who for years have frequented graveyards in search of reliable vital statistics on the thousands who have played big league ball.

Plus Jeff Logan and Kevin Kirmse, who collect artifacts from the game in Kansas City and recently have started taking their collecting to a whole new level. That may also, strangely enough, involve searching for a very unusual baseball artifact buried in the ground.

And researcher Larry Lester, who believes that the game in the decades before Jackie Robinson’s 1947 integration of Major League Baseball serves as a metaphor for America’s continuing evolution in race relations.

<snip>

So how is it that Lloyd Johnson, who has been researching baseball in Kansas City for 25 years and who often gives driving tours of historic local baseball sites, had never been inside the old Diamond Theater, operated before World War I by National Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher Charles “Kid” Nichols?

There’s a lot of Kansas City baseball history he still doesn’t know, Johnson says.

Like the Diamond Theater here. “I know there’s a picture of the outside of this theater in a photo store on Main Street,” he says.

But first, about “Kid” Nichols.

Nichols, who lived for more than four decades in Kansas City after his baseball career, ranks among the game’s all-time winners, totaling 360 victories over a 15-year major league career. As a 20-year-old rookie in 1890, he led the Boston Beaneaters with 27 victories. He went on to win 30 or more games a season a record seven times. He retired in 1906.

Not many people have been inside the Diamond Theater lately. It operated near what is now Prospect Avenue and Truman Road, and its facade has long been covered with siding. It’s impossible to recognize it as a theater from the street.

You can read the full article here: http://www.kansascity.com/2012/07/06/3693013/kansas-citys-baseball-dna.html

Related links: Kansas City's All-Star Game was well-covered by other SABR members this week, too. Here is a sampling of the All-Star articles we enjoyed from Around the Web:

You can find them all, and more, in "Around the Web" at SABR.org/latest.

Late registration still available for Jerry Malloy Negro Leagues Conference

Late registration for the 15th annual Jerry Malloy Negro League Conference — July 19-21, 2012, at the Renaissance Cleveland hotel in Cleveland, Ohio — is still available online at SABR.org/malloy. (On-site registration is also available.)

The full conference rate is $195, which includes all panels and presentations, Thursday meet-and-greet, Friday picnic, a ticket to the Friday Indians game, and Saturday banquet. The two-day rate (Friday-Saturday) is $175 for adults, $125 for students. One-day rate (Friday or Saturday) is $100.

The Malloy Conference, hosted by SABR's Negro Leagues Committee, promotes activities to enhance scholarly, educational, and literary objectives. For the past 14 years, the event has been the only symposium dedicated exclusively to the examination and promotion of black baseball history. The conference is open to baseball and history fans of all ages. Each year, monies are targeted to donate books to schools or libraries; raise funds for the Grave Marker Project; and award scholarships to high school seniors in a nationwide essay contest and a nationwide art contest. A complete information packet with schedule, mail-in registration form and program advertising opportunities can be downloaded here (PDF) or on the website at SABR.org/malloy.

The 2012 Malloy Conference theme is "Black Baseball in Ohio":

Black baseball has a strong history in Ohio and especially the city of Cleveland. In the 19th century, one of the first African American players in the majors, Moses Fleetwood Walker, played in Toledo. The city of Cleveland had more Negro League entries (11) than any other city in the Negro Leagues from the 1920s through the 1940s. The crowning success came with the 1945 Cleveland Buckeyes winning the Negro League World Series. Their roster included such key players as Quincy Trouppe, Sam Jethroe, Eugene Bremer and Archie Ware.

In 1948, the Cleveland Indians boasted the first African American player in the American League with the signing of Larry Doby and, later, the legendary Satchel Paige. The 15th annual Malloy Conference will celebrate Ohio’s baseball history. In addition to two days of research presentations and player/author panels, attendees will also enjoy a special presentation about League Park and a game with the Cleveland Indians and Minnesota Twins.

9 new biographies published by the SABR BioProject

Nine new biographies were posted as part of the SABR Baseball Biography Project — and we're still putting the finshing touches on our new BioProject book, Red Sox Baseball in the Days of Ike and Elvis: The Red Sox of the 1950s, edited by Mark Armour and Bill Nowlin, with Maurice Bouchard and Len Levin — which brings us to a total of 2,018 published biographies.

Here are the new bios:

All new biographies can be found here: http://sabr.org/bioproj/recent

We recently relaunched the BioProject at its new home page: SABR.org/BioProject. The new BioProject fully integrates its design with SABR.org and upgrades the back-end platform, making it easier for us to post and edit new bios and eliminating some formatting problems with the original software. All of your old URLs should still work (and if you find one that doesn't, please contact jpomrenke@sabr.org.)

Get involved! If you'd like to help contribute to the SABR BioProject, visit our BioProject Resources page or read the FAQs section to get started. We're also looking to expand the BioProject to include all "encyclopedic" articles on baseball-related subjects from past SABR publications or committee newsletters. If you come across an article you think should be included in the SABR "baseball repository" at the BioProject, send a copy or link to markarmour04@gmail.com or jpomrenke@sabr.org.

Writing opportunities for SABR members

  • Arriba Baseball!: A Collection of Latino/a Baseball Fiction: AO Publishing invites SABR members to submit their essays for a collection of the best Latino/a fiction that both celebrates and complicates the American pastime tentatively entitled Arriba Baseball!: A Collection of Latino/a Baseball Fiction. We invite such fiction (up to 5,000 words) concerning the game of baseball which challenges any and all exclusionary ideologies that have historically delimited the sport, and that meditates on the Latino/a contributions and experiences both on and off the field of play. While climactic home runs and strikeouts are okay, we prefer scoreboards but upside down. We also invite works that confront any of the issues surrounding baseball today, such as (but not limited to) the use of performance-enhancing drugs, queer and female performativity in baseball, the globalization of the sport, and baseball's legacies of white privilege, racism, and male exclusivity in the United States, Mexico, the Caribbean, and other countries throughout Latin America where the game continues to flourish. All fiction must be previously unpublished and of literary quality. Translations and works in Spanish will also be considered. We particularly encourage fiction from Latina and LGBT authors. Contributors will be paid $25 upon acceptance and a percentage of the net sales over the first two years. Please send fiction submissions to http://vao.submittable.com/submit. Deadline for submissions is August 31, 2012. Acceptances announced no later than October 1, 2012. Questions/comments may be directed to baseball@vaopublishing.com.
  • Deadball Era book reviews: Members of SABR's Deadball Era Research Committee who wish to review books for "The Inside Game" newsletter should send their name, email address, and up to five areas of particular interest regarding Deadball era baseball to Gail Rowe, at growes36@comcast.net, for a list of potential reviewers and areas of expertise he is compiling. If you wish to include relevant information on your background and experience, feel free to do so. 

Research committee newsletters

  • There were no newsletters published this week.

Find all SABR research committee newsletters at SABR.org/research.

Chapter meeting recaps

  • There were no chapter meeting recaps this week.

Visit SABR.org/chapters for more information on SABR regional chapters.

SABR Events Calendar

Here is a list of upcoming SABR events:

All SABR meetings and events are open to the public. Feel free to bring a baseball-loving friend ... and make many new ones! Check out the SABR Events Calendar at SABR.org/events.

Around the Web

Here are some recent articles published by and about SABR members:

Read these articles and more at SABR.org/latest.


All previous editions of This Week in SABR can be found here: http://sabr.org/content/this-week-in-sabr-archives. If you would like us to include an upcoming event, article or any other information in "This Week in SABR", e-mail Jacob Pomrenke at jpomrenke@sabr.org.

Find exclusive Members' Only resources and information here: http://sabr.org/about/members-info

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This page was last updated July 13, 2012 at 4:46 pm MST.

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