SABR

This Week in SABR: October 25, 2013

Welcome to "This Week in SABR!" Here's what we've been up to as of October 25, 2013:

Emily Hawks selected as interim Director on SABR Board

The SABR Board of Directors is pleased to announce its choice to fill the vacancy created by Paul Hirsch's recent resignation.

Pursuant to the process laid out in the SABR By-Laws, the Board has selected Emily Hawks of Seattle, Washington, to fill the Director's seat on an interim basis. She was elected by a unanimous vote of the remaining seven Board members. Emily will fill this interim Board seat effective immediately and serve until SABR's Annual Business Meeting on July 31, 2014, as this seat is up for re-election in the upcoming 2014 election.

A SABR member since 2008, Emily is an Assistant Vice President in the Analytics unit of Guy Carpenter and Co., LLC. In her role, she utilizes statistical models to quantify levels of risk for her clients, usually insurance companies, and consults with them on their business growth strategies. Emily is also pursuing a Master's in Computational Finance and Risk Management in the Applied Math department at the University of Washington. As an active member of the SABR Northwest Chapter, Emily has been a regular attendee at SABR's National Conventions, Analytics Conference and Arizona Fall League Conference.

The Board is grateful to the 18 members who submitted their self-nominations to fill the vacant Board seat.

Watch: Rawlings Gold Glove Award winners to be unveiled on ESPN on October 29

The 2013 Rawlings Gold Glove Award winners will be unveiled during a one-hour, ESPN2 “Baseball Tonight” primetime special on Tuesday, October 29 beginning at 8pm ET/7pm CT.

The 2013 season marks the first season Rawlings formally incorporates sabermetrics as a component of the Rawlings Gold Glove Award® and Rawlings Platinum Glove Award™ selection process.

In August, Rawlings and SABR revealed the committee of seven sabermetric experts and the SABR Defensive Index™ (SDI™) that the committee created. The SABR Defensive Committee includes:

  • Committee chair Vince Gennaro, SABR President and author of Diamond Dollars: The Economics of Winning in Baseball
  • Sean Forman, founder of Baseball-Reference.com
  • John Dewan, owner of Baseball Info Solutions
  • Bo Moon, executive vice president and co-founder of Bloomberg Sports
  • Chris Dial, author and recognized expert on defensive metrics
  • Michael Humphreys, author of Wizardry: Baseball’s All-Time Greatest Fielders Revealed
  • F.X. Flinn, SABR board of directors

The SABR Defensive Index draws on and aggregates two types of existing defensive metrics: those derived from batted ball, location-based data and those collected from play-by-play accounts. The three metrics representing batted ball data include Defensive Runs Saved from Baseball Info Solutions, Ultimate Zone Rating developed by noted sabermetrician Mitchel Lichtman, and Runs Effectively Defended built by SABR Defensive Committee member Chris Dial. The two metrics included in the SDI originating from play-by-play data are Defensive Regression Analysis, created by committee member Michael Humphreys, and Total Zone Rating.

The SDI will be instrumental in comparing players across positions to help determine the updated Rawlings Platinum Glove Award, now presented by SABR. Fans will continue to have a voice during this process, and will be able to vote online once the newest class of Rawlings Gold Glove Award winners is announced during the telecast.

Last chance to register for 2013 SABR Arizona Fall League Conference

We're gearing up for the fifth annual SABR Arizona Fall League Conferenceon  October 31-November 2, 2013. The conference will feature four AFL games at three different ballparks. Guests will see all six AFL teams, showcasing every major league team's top prospects. The final game on Saturday night is the Fall Stars Game at Surprise Stadium.

After taking in a game on Thursday afternoon, guests will also be treated to dinner at Don and Charlie's, home to one of the great sports memorabilia collections you will ever see, with former major leaguers Lou Klimchock, Ron Davis, Dave Hilton and Ken Phelps, along with AFL founder Roland Hemond. Friday's schedule includes two AFL games and a pregame ballpark dinner at Talking Stick at Salt River, along with special guest speaker Mark Davis, 1989 National League Cy Young Award winner and now a minor league pitching coach in the Kansas City Royals organization. Davis spent 15 years in the major leagues with the Phillies, Giants, Padres, Royals, Braves and Brewers.

On Saturday morning, attendees will join members of SABR's Flame Delhi (Arizona) Chapter for their regional fall meeting. Saturday night is always a highlight of the conference as the top prospects from every organization participate in the AFL Fall Stars game. All of this, including transportation, is included in one low registration price.

Can't make it to all three days of the SABR Arizona Fall League Conference? Single-event registration is now available online for the Thursday night dinner at Don & Charlie's, the Friday night cookout with Mark Davis and ballgame at Talking Stick at Salt River, and the Fall Stars Game on Saturday night at Surprise Stadium.

All baseball fans are welcome to attend.

Hotel: The host hotel is the Holiday Inn Express & Suites in Old Town Scottsdale (3131 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale, AZ 85251). The deadline for the SABR group rate has now expired. Call (480) 675-7665 or visit www.hiescottsdalehotel.com to book your room.

There is a free airport shuttle which also is available from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. for rides anywhere within a three-mile radius of the hotel.

Registration: Your registration fee of $175  includes all game tickets; an AFL Media Guide; dinner at Don and Charlie’s; ballpark dinner at Talking Stick at Salt River; and transportation to and from all events. Hotel registration includes breakfast and complementary happy hour each day. Register for the 2013 SABR AFL Conference by clicking here. Questions: Please contact Rodney Johnson at sabrrodney@aol.com.

The Arizona Fall League (mlbfallball.com) is baseball's premier player development league. In the first four years of the conference, attendees were treated to sneak peeks at Mike Trout, Bryce Harper, Buster Posey, Stephen Strasburg, Nolan Arenado, Gerrit Cole and Billy Hamilton before they hit the big leagues.

A detailed schedule and more information can be found at SABR.org/AFL.

Watch "Padres Memorable Moments: A Radio Re-Creation"

On August 9, SABR's Ted Williams Chapter hosted a special radio re-creation of great San Diego Padres moments at the Scripps Ranch Library Auditorium, sponsored by The Aramco Group.

To watch this special SABR event online, click here.

Emceed and "re-broadcast" by SABR member Bob Chandler, the Padres' longtime radio announcer, the program consists of nine re-created innings of great Padres moments, including special guest interviews with Tony Gwynn, Jerry Coleman, Randy Jones, Roger Craig and more Padres legends.

Students: Apply for a Yoseloff Scholarship to attend 2014 SABR Analytics Conference

With generous funding from The Anthony A. Yoseloff Foundation, Inc., SABR will award up to four scholarships to college students who wish to attend the 2014 SABR Analytics Conference on March 13-15, 2014, in Phoenix, Arizona. This scholarship will pay for registration, air transportation and lodging up to a total value of $1,250.

The objective of this scholarship fund is to encourage student engagement with baseball analytics, and to engender an active interest in baseball research and SABR. The Yoseloff scholarship is to assist young researchers who want to attend SABR's Analytics Conference and to introduce them to fellow SABR members and professionals within the baseball community. Through this fund, SABR hopes to inspire future baseball research, expose students to high-quality research and build the research capability of interested students.

To apply, submit an essay of 750 words or less answering the following questions: "How does attending this conference help you in analytics and/or baseball research? Why would this conference be beneficial for you to attend?" Style guidelines are available on the application form.

Students must be currently enrolled in a high school, college undergraduate or graduate program, and be between 18 and 29 years of age at the time of the conference. Some form of age verification (photocopy of driver’s license, passport, etc.) must be attached to your application.

Submissions must include a brief letter of recommendation from a current high school/college teacher, guidance counselor or a school administrator. All applications must be postmarked or e-mailed to Jeff Schatzki at jschatzki@sabr.org no later than December 31, 2013.

For full details on how to apply, click here.

Registration now open for 2014 SABR Analytics Conference

SABR has a long and storied history with baseball statistical analysis, evidenced by the link between our name and sabermetrics. While SABR is a multi-faceted organization involved in virtually every aspect of baseball, we have taken a major step to re-connect with our beginnings by producing and hosting the third annual:

SABR Analytics Conference
March 13-15, 2014
Hyatt Regency Phoenix
Phoenix, Arizona

Once again, we're bringing together the top minds of the baseball analytic community under one roof to discuss, debate and share insightful ways to analyze and examine the great game of baseball.

The schedule will consist of a combination of Guest Speakers, Panels and Research Presentations — plus the unique Diamond Dollars Case Competition, in which undergraduate, graduate and law school students from across the country analyze and present a real baseball operations decision.

  • Early registration rates:
      — SABR members: $395 early rate; $595 full rate.
      — Non-SABR members: $495 early rate; $695 full rate. If you are not a SABR member, click here to join.
      — Students: $350; includes one-year membership to SABR. Must be a currently enrolled high school or college student. Please e-mail Deb Jayne with a photocopy of your student ID to receive the registration promo code.
     
    Please note: Lunch is included with your registration on Friday, March 14 and Saturday, March 15. The mixer/welcome reception is included with your registration on Thursday, March 13. Specify any special dietary needs when you register.
        
  • Hotel: The 2014 SABR Analytics Conference will be held at the Hyatt Regency Phoenix, 122 N. 2nd St., Phoenix, AZ 85004. Click here to book your hotel room at the special SABR group rate of $169/night (plus tax.) Or call (602) 252-1234 and mention that you're with the SABR Analytics Conference.

    Complimentary wireless Internet is available in all rooms booked under the SABR block. The cutoff date to book your room is February 18, 2014. The SABR group rate is only available for the nights of March 10 to March 18, 2014, based on availability. Book your room today! 

Some of the topics we are planning to cover include:

  • General Managers Panel on how analytics shapes front-office decisions
  • Player Panel - how major league players take advantage of analytics
  • Biometrics/Injury Prevention Panel  NEW!
  • International Baseball Panel  NEW!
  • Baseball Scouting Panel  NEW!

Check back soon at SABR.org/analytics as we announce more featured speakers, panels and presentations!

For complete coverage of the 2013 SABR Analytics Conference, visit SABR.org/analytics/2013.

Almost time to renew your SABR membership

For those of you whose SABR memberships expire on December 31 — that is, anyone who joined before August 2012; you can check your current membership status here — it's almost time for you to renew. We're excited about the upcoming year ahead of us and we hope you'll take advantage of all the great membership benefits offered to SABR members in 2014. Here's a short list:

http://sabr.org/member-benefits

You can renew your membership for 1 year or 3 years online at the SABR Store; by phone at (602) 343-6450; or by mailing this downloadable PDF form and your payment to the SABR office at 4455 E. Camelback Road, Ste. D-140, Phoenix, AZ 85018.

Dues are the same as they have been in recent years: for this, you get two editions of the Baseball Research Journal, the expanded e-book edition of The National Pastime; 6-8 free e-books published by the SABR Digital Library; "This Week in SABR" every Friday; access to research resources such as Paper of Record (with complete archives of The Sporting News); discounts to all SABR conferences such as the National Convention (Houston 2014), the SABR Analytics Conference, the Jerry Malloy Negro League Conference, and the Frederick Ivor-Campbell 19th Century Conference; discounts to MLB.TV, the MLB.com Store and much, much more.

We believe SABR has something for everyone, from the active researcher to someone passionate about baseball. We hope you'll invite your friends, colleagues and family members to join at http://store.sabr.org.

Donate to SABR and support the future of baseball research

Unlike many nonprofit organizations that hold monthly donation pledge drives and continually solicit donations, SABR has never been proactive about asking for donations. However, like all other nonprofit 501(c)3 organizations, SABR relies heavily on generous donations to supplement its membership dues and help the organization survive and prosper. We appreciate those members who have given in the past and continue to donate to SABR. As SABR continues to serve its members and move forward with exciting new member opportunities, we are going to become more proactive by asking our passionate and knowledgeable members to support their very special organization.

All donations to SABR are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. We thank you for supporting SABR and baseball research in all its forms.

To make a donation to support SABR, visit SABR.org/donate.

— Marc Appleman, SABR Executive Director

From the SABR archives: Interviews with heroes of Octobers past

We took a whirl through the SABR archives for interviews with heroes of Octobers past conducted by members of our Oral History Research Committee. Over the last quarter-century, the SABR Oral History Committee has compiled hundreds of interviews of former players in the majors, minors, Negro Leagues and All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, along with executives, scouts, authors and writers, broadcasters and fans.

In 2011, we posted some audio excerpts from our collection online. Listen to these players talk about their postseason glory days in their own words:

  • Lew Burdette, who won three games for the Milwaukee Braves in the 1957 World Series, talks about the infamous "shoe polish" hit-by-pitch incident with Nippy Jones in Game 4 and beating Whitey Ford with a 1-0 shutout in Game 5.
  • Hank Bauer, who helped the New York Yankees win nine pennants in 11 years, talks about his bases-loaded triple in Game 6 of the 1951 World Series against the New York Giants.
  • Dusty Rhodes, who hit two unlikely home runs for the New York Giants in the 1954 World Series, talks about facing the Cleveland Indians pitchers in spring training at Tucson, Arizona, and celebrating his World Series heroics back home in Alabama.
  • Al Gionfriddo, who made one of the most famous catches in World Series history for the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947, reminisces about the play that made him a household name to a generation of Dodgers fans and his memorable appearance as a pinch-runner in Game 4, when Bill Bevens lost a no-hitter with two outs in the ninth.
  • Marty Marion, the St. Louis Cardinals star shortstop and National League MVP for 1944, talks about beating the mighty Yankees in the 1942 World Series and playing through illness during the 1944 World Series.

Click here to listen to the interviews: http://sabr.org/latest/sabr-interviews-heroes-octobers-past

Call for Papers: 2014 The National Pastime

The 2014 SABR national convention will take place July 30-August 3, 2014, at the Royal Sonesta Hotel in Houston, Texas.

To coincide with the convention, the summer 2014 issue of The National Pastime will focus on Houston-area baseball. In particular, we will be focusing on 1962-present to avoid overlap with the special book on pre-Astros baseball that the Houston chapter is concurrently producing. We expect most of the articles will center on the Astros, but we are open to other topics that fit the time frame (Women's baseball? Little league? Fan studies? College baseball? You tell us.) Articles may be historical, biographical, or analytical, but please avoid personal narrative.

This issue of The National Pastime will be edited by publications director Cecilia Tan. She will be taking queries and abstracts until November 15, 2013, and will make assignments no later than December 1. First drafts of articles will be due by March 1, 2014, and rewrites (if needed) will be due by April 15.

Queries should include 1-2 paragraphs of brief but detailed encapsulation of the article idea, as well as a description of why you are interested in it or qualified to research it. Be specific about the sources you plan to use and what of your research is original. If you can estimate the length of the finished article, that is good, too. Typical articles tend to run 2,000 to 5,000 words — the size of a midterm paper, not a masters thesis. The upper limit on papers for the TNP is around 6,500 words. 

To query, email to ctan@sabr.org with the subject line "TNP Query:" and a key word or two on your subject. For example: "TNP Query: Bagwell/Biggio Comparison."

Some possible subjects that could be included:

  • invention of Astroturf/uniqueness of the Astrodome
  • the April 15, 1968 marathon 24-inning game
  • 1963 all-rookie game
  • Colt Stadium's contribution to the establishment of Sunday night baseball
  • the lone game in Astrodome history that was rained out
  • Leo Durocher's over-the-hill misfit time as Houston's manager;
  • analysis of the blockbuster trade of 1971
  • the so-called Astrodome Indian Burial Grounds Curse
  • Astros pitchers dying young (Don Wilson, Jim Umbricht, possibly Darryl Kile)
  • 1986 All Star Game
  • Astros postseason performance analysis
  • The Killer Bs

Remember that every article must include proper citation of sources and present a clear thesis, and to be published in a SABR journal your SABR membership must be current. For full writers guidelines, submit a query to ctan@sabr.org and you will receive the full guidelines in reply.

For more information on the SABR 44 convention in Houston, visit SABR.org/convention.

Vote now for 1920 All-Stars in Retroactive All-Star Game Project

The Great Tradition Continues! Cast Your Vote For The 1920 All-Stars!

The Voice of the Fan — YOU — will be heard in the Retroactive All-Star Game Project.

Every once in a while, a tradition is commenced that defines a turning point in the life of an institution. A generation ago, that tradition for the game of Base Ball was the World’s Series, pitting the two greatest teams in the greatest sport in the world to face off for the right to be declared Champions. 

In this generation, it is now known to all that the tradition that has changed the face of the institution of Base Ball is the All-Star Game, pitting the collective acumen of the greatest base ball players in the world, representing every team in the two great leagues, against one another to show which league is the superior of the other. 

On Saturday, July 17, 1920, the greatest stars in The Game will convene at Braves Field in Boston to play in the fourth annual All-Star Game. And the starters, including three pitchers, for each side will be selected by YOU, The Fan!   

Because this is YOUR game. It belongs to YOU. Tell the world who the greatest players in The Game are in 1920.

The games will be played using Out of the Park 14, and the game account and box score will be posted over at Seamheads.com.

Vote for the 1920 All-Star starters and pitchers here:

https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/ASG1920

Voting will be open until 3:00 a.m. EDT on November 8, 2013. At that time, we will count up the votes, put together the rosters, and sim the game.

To learn more about the Retroactive All-Star Project, or to view past results, visit SABR.org/retroactive-all-star-project/about.

— Chuck Hildebrandt

MLB.com seeking stats stringers for 2014 season

MLB.com, the official web site of Major League Baseball, is seeking stats stringers to cover these clubs in 2014 and beyond:

  • Anaheim/Los Angeles
  • Chicago (both teams)
  • Cleveland
  • Colorado
  • Detroit
  • Miami
  • Oakland/San Francisco
  • Texas

Stats stringers are responsible for digitally scoring games from the MLB ballparks, which provides the data used in the live content applications on MLB.com, including At-Bat, Gameday and MLB.TV, real-time highlights and text alerts, and by our business partners. This is a perfect part-time job for a responsible, computer-savvy person who happens to be a big baseball fan.

For more details on the responsibilities required and the desired qualifications, click here.

Those interested in applying should send a resume and cover letter, addressing the above-listed qualifications, to stats@website.mlb.com. ONLY those who reply to this e-mail address will be considered, and due to volume, we may be unable to respond to all applicants.

Thanks and good luck! 

ICYMI: Highlights from last week's This Week in SABR

We've heard your feedback: Some of you have said you look forward to "This Week in SABR" every Friday, but sometimes there are just too many compelling articles and announcements to read every week. We're not complaining — hey, keep up the great work! — but we know the feeling. So in an effort to make the length of this newsletter more manageable to read, we'll summarize some of the repeating/recurring announcements in a special "In Case You Missed It (ICYMI)" section of "This Week in SABR".

Here are some major headlines from recent weeks that we don't want you to miss:

All previous editions of This Week in SABR can be found here: http://sabr.org/content/this-week-in-sabr-archives.

Welcome, new members!

We'd like to welcome all of our new SABR members who have joined this week. You can find all Members-Only resources at members.sabr.org and the New Member Handbook can be downloaded here.

Please give these new members a warm welcome and help them make the most of their membership by giving them the opportunity to get involved in their local chapter or a research committee.

Name Hometown     Name Hometown
Evan Beere Philadelphia, PA     Jake Lighter Boca Raton, FL
Jonathan Bergeron Quebec City, QC     Anne Marx Dubuque, IA
Karl Burgess Whittier, CA     Steve Mirsky Bronx, NY
Sean Church Bellingham, WA     Jeff Nicholson Dayton, OH
Bart Cohen Villanova, PA     Steve Powderly Colorado Springs, CO
Tim Cornett Palmyra, PA     Brian Prijatel North Royalton, OH
Bill Davidson Brier, WA     Stephen Rice Collierville, TN
Paul DeVos Addison, TX     Martin Watts Albuquerque, NM
Gerry Fox Los Angeles, CA     Allen Wolf Alexandria, VA
Anthony Joshi-Pawlowic Chicago, IL        

 

Research committee newsletters

There were no new SABR research committee newsletters published this week.

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

Chapter meeting news

Here are the new chapter meeting recaps published 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.


This Week in SABR is compiled by Jacob Pomrenke, and sent out to all SABR members on Fridays. 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 jpomrenke@sabr.org.

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

Did you know you can renew your membership at any time? 1- and 3-year SABR memberships are available by clicking "Renew" at http://members.sabr.org. Please also consider a donation to SABR to support baseball research at SABR.org/donate.

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Replying to this e-mail goes to an undeliverable address. If you would like to contact the SABR office, please visit: http://sabr.org/about/contact-sabr

This page was last updated October 25, 2013 at 3:29 pm MST.

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