Baseball, and Strat-O-Matic, keeps some friends forever young

From Bill Lubinger at The Plain Dealer on April 10, 2012, with mention of SABR member Mike Meissner:

The Indians are into the first full week of the season, but as far as these 12 men are concerned, baseball season started more than a month ago.

And on a recent game night, it sure sounded like baseball season.

“Jim’s trying to steal home! … He’s out!”

“Chipper’s up, two down, second and third … strikeout.”

“Two-out bingo. C’mon Big Papi.”

Such banter emanates from members of the World Baseball Association, a 12-team Strat-O-Matic baseball league whose first pitch was thrown in 1980 — back when Mike Hargrove was at first base and Rick Manning played center for the Indians.

League managers come from all walks of life and Northeast Ohio locales. Every other Thursday, in a 100-game schedule that runs from late February to when a World Series champion is finally crowned in September, they share in the joy of a game and each other.

“We all love baseball,” said Mike Meissner, 57, of Fairview Park, the league’s founder and commissioner. “That’s what we have in common.”

Read the full article here:

Originally published: April 11, 2012. Last Updated: April 11, 2012.