Smoky Joe Wood Chapter meeting recap – 10/17/2015

The Connecticut Smoky Joe Wood Chapter held a small but vibrant meeting on Oct. 17 at Middlesex Community College.


PAUL MOEHRINGER led off with a presentation of his Pyramid Rating System. It’s an iterative system, wherein he ranks each season’s players using a standard deviation measure, eliminates the extreme value, reruns the ranking process, and repeats for all players.

MARJORIE ADAMS reviewed her 4-year quest that has led to the inclusion of her Great Great Grandfather, Daniel Lucious ‘Doc’ Adams, on the Pre-Integration Era Ballot for 2016 Hall of Fame voting. She brought two marvelous displays showing copies of dozens of artifacts from the 1830s to late 19th Century. Marjorie is not taking no for an answer, promising that she will continue to lobby for Doc if he doesn’t make it in for 2016.

JEFF DOOLEY, the radio and tv voice of the Hartford Yard Goats (formerly New Britain Rock Cats), AA affilate of the Colorado Rockies, talked about the new $60 million stadium under construction in Hartford. (Dunkin Donuts Stadium.) Jeff shared info about tickets, seating and accomodations. In addition to 71 Yard Goats games per year, the target of 500,000 total attendance could be reached with non-Eastern League events including a UConn-UMass ballgame in May, several movie nights, 2 to 3 concerts in 2016 and an AHL Winter Hockey Classic in 2017.

ALAN COHEN talked about the new SABR books that are available including one about the 1965 Minnesota Twins, and some of the upcoming books like the one that documents all of the MLB players who had guest roles on the Fox animated series The Simpsons. Alan also gave us an update on his newest research findings about the Hearst Sandlot Classic, a schoolboy all star game that was played annually from 1946 to 1965. From its beginning, The Classic not only showcased young players that would become major league players it featured Mel Ott, Connie Mack, Ty Cobb and Honus Wagner as managers in various years. Alan also told the story of a curious coincidence when he, likely the most knowledgeable person about the Hearst Classic, went to dinner at the First & Last Tavern in Avon, CT and randomly noticed on the wall a team photo of the 1946 Hearst players of all things! Fate.

Alan and KARL CICITTO recapped Mike Sandlock’s 100th Birthday Party which they attended earlier in the day. This was a private family celebration that honored Sandllock, MLB’s oldest living former player, on the day he reached the century mark. PETER SEIDEL and DON HARRISON joined Alan and Karl in presenting to Sandlock an uncorrected manuscript of “100: The 100 Year Journey of a Baseball Journeyman”. They also presented a letter of greeting from Commissioner Manfred and a Proclamation from Gov. Dannel Malloy. Sandlock was talkative, energetic and didn’t look a day over 80. When asked about Ebbets Field he said, “Oh, how I loved it. Ebbets Field and the Polo Grounds were special places and how I miss them dearly today.” He also recalled being fed sandwiches by Dodger fans between the games of double headers and how he enjoyed beating Ralph Kiner at Golf at Innis Ardens GC.

STEVE KREVISKY led an open discussion about the recent National Convention which was held at the swanky Palmer House Hilton in the Windy City. All agreed it was a terrific city in which to gather. Steve also led discussions about holding a future regional meeting involving all New England chapters and about where and when to hold our Holiday Luncheon.

Steve led off the Trivia segment with this stumper: Who is the only HOF’er to come from Morocco?  It is Sam Rice, of course. (Morocco, Indiana.)


  • Devon Whyte, former major leaguer with 3 ASG’s and 7 Gold Gloves, is the guest speaker at the World Series Club of Hartford County on November 5. “Devo” played in 3 Fall Classics and won 3 rings. More info at
  • Sparky Lyle will headline the 56th Annual Sports Awards Dinner on Nov. 13 in Greenwich, CT. More info at
  • The Nap Lajoie (R.I.) Chapter will hold its annual Thanksgiving Weekend meeting on Nov. 28 at St. Phillips Parish Center in Greenville, RI. Steve Payne, a Miami Marlin scout, will appear. Rick Elliott, author of “Clem Labine, Always A Dodger”, will present and offer his book for sale. Rich Gedman may attend if his schedule allows. There will be a book raffle, trivia quiz, presentations and lunch. Len Levin conducts a wonderful chapter meeting so be there if you can.
  • The Rabbit Maranville (Springfield, MA) Chapter had a large crowd in attendance to hear former Globe columnist Bob Ryan speak on Sept. 21.
  • The Gardner-Waterman (VT) Chapter has set a tentative date of Nov. 7 for a general meeting in beautiful Burlington.
  • The Boston Chapter will hold its fall meeting on Nov. 7 at The Non Profit Center, 89 South Street, Boston, close to South Station. The Center is easy to get to, by the Red Line or by parking at the garage at Two Financial Center, right next door. (More info on under Events).
  • Deadline for the January issue of The Wood Pile chapter newsletter is Dec. 15. If you are already committed to contributing please send to Karl your piece(s) by Dec. 15 to If you are interested in contributing, please let Karl know.
  • The next meeting of the Hartford Stadium Authority is at 3 p.m. on November 3 and is open to the public. It will be at City Hall in Hartford.
  • Our Media Panel event for SABR Day 2016 needs a Player. Do you have contact with a former MLB player that lives locally? We’d like to add a player to the media panel event, which is held on SABR Day in January. Please let Karl know if you have any leads.

— Karl Cicitto