SABR

Summer 2010

Volume 39, Issue 1

  • Disposable Heroes: Returning World War II Veteran Al Niemiec Takes on Organized Baseball By Jeff Obermeyer

    After returning home from World War II, Al Niemiec hoped to resume his baseball career with the Seattle Rainiers. When the team released him, he filed suit under the Selective Training and Services Act. The lawsuit affected baseball for years to come.

  • Action Jackson: Watching Baseball Remotely, Before TV By Eric Zweig

    Before the widespread use of action photography or motion pictures, the Jackson Manikin Baseball Indicator helped baseball fans keep up with the game for one summer.

  • The Brooklyn Dodgers in Jersey City By John Burbridge

    As owner Walter O’Malley was jockeying with Robert Moses and other New York politicians about the future of baseball in Brooklyn, the Dodgers played 15 regular-season games in Jersey City in 1956-57.

  • The Green and the Blue: The Irish American Umpire, 1880–1965 By David Fleitz

    Baseball provided an opportunity for Irishmen to participate in and excel at something distinctly American — as players and as umpires.

  • More Thoughts on DiMaggio’s 56-Game Hitting Streak By Edward Beltrami and Jay Mendelsohn

    Is a long hitting streak consistent with a random coin-tossing model or is it an exceptional event that defies the odds?

  • Properties of Baseball Bats By Ben Walker

    Every batter has unique psychological approaches, swing mechanics, habits and characteristics. Even so, one thing about hitting is true for every hitter: Every time he walks up to the plate, he has only one tool to work with.

  • Stealing First Base By Jim Kreuz

    Why are there so few innovations to equipment and strategy in baseball? Here's a few quirky ideas.

  • Measuring Defense: Entering the Zones of Fielding Statistics By Dan Basco and Jeff Zimmerman

    A look at some of the new, and not so new, defensive metrics available and which major-league clubs are mining them for an advantage.

  • Manager Speaker By Steve Steinberg

    Tris Speaker is rarely considered a great manager, but his success with the Indians in 1920 and 1921 reveals a special leadership skill set.

  • The Hidden Value of Glovework By Vince Gennaro

    The key to competing efficiently is to get the biggest bang for your payroll bucks by finding “value.” One approach is to determine which player-performance attributes or skills are “discounted” in baseball’s labor market.

  • Larry Doby’s “The Catch” By Ken Saulter

    Overshadowed three months later by arguably the greatest catch in the history of baseball, Hall of Famer Larry Doby performed a remarkable feat in center field for the Indians in July 1954.

  • The Evolution of Catcher’s Equipment By Chuck Rosciam

    Catchers have always put their bodies on the line. But early efforts to protect themselves met with a lot of flak.

  • The Real First-Year Player Draft By Cliff Blau

    Nearly a decade before the amateur draft as we know it today, Major League Baseball instituted the First-Year Player Draft in an effort to reduce signing bonuses to prospects.

  • Georgia’s 1948 Phenoms and the Bonus Rule By Wynn Montgomery

    In 1948, Willard Nixon and Hugh Radcliffe were two of the nation's premier pitching prospects. Because of the "bonus rule" in effect at the time, each had to make a difficult, life-altering decision about their futures.

  • Does “Game Score” Still Work in Today’s High-Offense Game? By Jeff Angus

    Analyzing whether the "Game Score" stat Bill James made widely public in 1988 significantly measures pitching performance.

  • The History and Future of the Amateur Draft By John Manuel

    The idea that the MLB amateur draft would be broadcast nationally on prime time was preposterous as recently as 1998.

  • Earl Weaver: Strategy, Innovation, and Ninety-Four Meltdowns By Jeff Burd

    The Earl of Baltimore was one of the first managers to make extensive use of statistics, but it was his AL-record 94 ejections that dominate his legacy.

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