By Marsha Franty
On Monday, April 19, 2021, 25 SABR members participated in the Zoom meeting of the Larry Dierker Chapter in Houston. Joe West “stories” were exchanged as friends signed on. Chair Bob Dorrill called the meeting to order and reported that he had enjoyed a conversation with member Larry Miggins, now 95 and doing well. Larry confirmed that he was on the opposing team when Jackie Robinson debuted in the majors with Montreal. Bob then asked members about their interest in attending a Sugar Land Skeeters game in June. Tickets will be $40 for air-conditioned seating and buffet dining; a minimum of 20 is needed for the group rate.
The leadoff speaker of the evening was Brian Frank, an author, teacher, attorney, and fan from Buffalo, New York. His new book is Blue Jays in Buffalo: the Return of Major League Baseball to the Queen City. During the 2020 Covid-shortened season, Brian’s media credentials gave him access to the Blue Jays “home” games at Buffalo’s Sahlen Field. His review of the history of major league baseball in that city was followed by his stunning photographs of the games and the ballpark. He detailed the changes that were made to transform the facilities to meet MLB specifications.
Due to the on-going issues with Covid, it is possible that the Blue Jays will return to Buffalo in early summer if health restrictions prohibit them from playing in Toronto. Brian’s excellent presentation elicited a variety of questions from the members.
During “intermission,” Joe Thompson offered two survey questions: one about the number of baseball books each member had read thus far in 2021 and a second question about how many major-league games one plans to attend this year.
The second speaker for this meeting was T.R. Sullivan, a writer who has covered the Texas Rangers for many years. He elaborated on some of the issues, choices, and conflicts about expansion teams in recent decades and offered interesting comparisons of the Rangers and the Astros as their rivalry has developed. His acquaintance with owners, management, and players added many intriguing insights and a lively and lengthy discussion followed.
John Lloyd offered a wide-ranging Trivia Quiz. After many questions and much banter, Tony Cavendar emerged the winner and is charged with creating the next quiz.
Bob Dorrill closed the meeting with his announcement that, in his absence, Joe Thompson has volunteered to lead the next chapter meeting which will be on Monday, May 17. Stay tuned for more details.
Click here to watch a replay of the meeting: