We had a turnout of 131 at the Holiday Inn Rosslyn in Arlington, Virginia, for a program that we felt went very well. This was our third time participating in the national SABR Day, but it was our 38th annual meeting.
After some housekeeping where we re-elected members of our Board and announced that we were going to form a chapter trivia team to challenge other chapters at SABR 42 in Minneapolis, we were treated to the following: David Vincent — Bob Davids Chapter Board member, Chapter Historian and Emcee for the proceedings — kicked things off with a great presentation on pitchers who hit home runs. This set the appropriate tone and we were off and running.
Bob Savitt, former Bob Davids Chapter President, having recently published his book, The Blue Ridge League (Images of Baseball), gave a succinct synopsis of his in?depth research of a league that overlapped with the boundaries of our chapter, geographically if not chronologically. Jim Hannan, former Washington Senators pitcher regaled us with stories from his career, but even more impressive is the work he has done and is doing on behalf of other retired players, particularly through the Alumni Association. After Jim's talk, we had a fine buffet luncheon.
Following that, Dave Smith, Retrosheet icon, recounted some of the questions posed to him during the 2011 baseball season by the media and the research they prompted him to do. Those results are always interesting and we are indeed fortunate to have Dave as a regular contributor at our meetings. Steve Sclafani, founder and CEO of the Baseball Factory, a recognized leader in player development and college placement, told us how his organization scouts and develops young players, helping them (and their parents) plan appropriately for a possible future in baseball.
Andy Bradley, alumni player and now head coach of the very successful baseball program at Gonzaga High School in Washington, D.C., told us of his coaching philosophy. Andy’s dad, Tom, pitched in the majors for seven seasons and was the head baseball coach at the University of Maryland. Great job by the conference’s youngest coach, a title he has held for the past eight years. Tom Hanrahan, chapter member, presented a well-devised formula for comparing the relative values of the game’s best pitchers and batters.
Our Raffle, bolstered this year with items donated from the Bob Davids estate, raised more than $600 for the chapter coffers.
— D. Bruce Brown