Larry Dierker Chapter meeting recap – 10/19/2020

Houston’s Larry Dierker Chapter gathered on Monday, October 19, 2020, for another great virtual Zoom meeting. After a brief group discussion on the end of the Astros season, guest host Joe Thompson posted four survey questions to which members responded electronically and which would be reviewed later in the meeting.

Tony Cavender mentioned that he had heard a media interview with Jeff Luhnow. Tony recounted some of the key comments made by the former Astros General Manager.

Joe Thompson introduced the evening’s featured speaker, Bill Nowlin. Bill is a prolific researcher, author, and editor known for his many books and articles as well as for being a long-time leader within SABR. His most recent title is Working a “Perfect” Game: Conversations with Umpires. He described how he approached the “men in blue”, what sort of questions he posed to the, and what challenges they face.  Each of them has survived an intensely competitive route to becoming a Major League umpire and each brings a high degree of dedication to his work.  There were many and varied questions from those attending and Bill was gracious in responding fully to each query.

It was announced that the second edition of our newsletter will be published at the end of this month.  For those who wish to contribute to the third edition, the deadline for submission of articles will be January 15, 2021.

Joe Thompson shared the results of the survey questions he had introduced earlier and there was a brief discussion on the possible outcomes of the World Series and on the futures of those Astros players who are eligible for free agency.

Maxwell Kates introduced a complex trivia quiz on Mickey Mantle.  Mark Wernick emerged the winner and will produce next month’s quiz.

Bob Dorrill announced that the November meeting will feature Mike Vance, speaking on the centennial of the Negro Leagues, and Paul Rogers, who will speak on Robin Roberts.

Thirty-five members from around the country and Canada participated in this evening’s meeting.

— Marsha Franty