SABR is pleased to announce the 2020 recipients of the Henry Chadwick Award, established to honor the game’s great researchers — historians, statisticians, annalists, and archivists — for their invaluable contributions to making baseball the game that links America’s present with its past.
The 2020 recipients of the Henry Chadwick Award are:
- Michael Haupert (1961 – ) is responsible for much of our growing knowledge of the history of the business of baseball, particularly as it relates to player salaries. In 2012, Baseball-Reference.com added salary information from Haupert’s database for nearly 7,000 player-seasons, primarily from 1915 to 1969, researched from player contract records at the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Haupert has since added to his database, including salary data from the Negro Leagues, the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, and earlier years. Using his salary information and other data finds, Haupert has published more than 60 articles on the business of baseball. His salary data along with his other primary research and published insights have become indispensable for business of baseball historians. He is a Professor of Economics at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and co-chair of the SABR Business of Baseball Committee.
- Thomas Shea (1904-1995) was one of the 16 founding members of SABR, making the drive to Cooperstown from his home in Hingham, Massachusetts, for the organization’s first meeting in August 1971. Shea’s baseball work was devoted to collecting biographical details on players, umpires, and other personnel. A longtime traveling salesman in the Northeast, Shea’s work allowed him to visit libraries and speak to people throughout the region. He was a major contributor to Turkin and Thompson’s Official Encyclopedia of Baseball, first published in 1951, and to an informal biographical research group organized by Sporting News editor Lee Allen in the 1960s. One of SABR’s original committees was the Biographical Research Committee, whose work can be said to be a continuation of the work that Shea had been doing for more than 40 years. Shea remained a SABR member, as an active researcher and always as a respected source, until his death.
- Tom Tango (1968 – ) spent more than a decade as a widely respected baseball analyst before joining MLB Advanced Media in 2016 as their first Senior Database Architect of Stats. MLBAM had introduced Statcast to all 30 MLB stadiums in 2015 and had the problem of deciding what questions it wanted to ask, and how to ask them. Tango first became known in the baseball community with his work at Baseball Think Factory, before starting his own blog at tangotiger.com. He created the Marcel projection system and was the primary developer of FIP and wOBA. In 2006 he teamed up with Mitchel Lichtman and Andrew Dophin for The Book: Playing the Percentages in Baseball. Tom has continued to be one of the field’s best analysts and one of the friendliest and most helpful members of the public community.
By honoring individuals for the length and breadth of their contribution to the study and enjoyment of baseball, the Chadwick Award will educate the baseball community about sometimes little known but vastly important contributions from the game’s past and thus encourage the next generation of researchers.
The criteria for the award reads in part: The contributions of nominees must have had public impact. This may be demonstrated by publication of research in any of a variety of formats: books, magazine articles, websites, etc. The compilation of a significant database or archive that has facilitated the published research of others will also be considered in the realm of public impact.
For a complete list of Chadwick Award winners, click here.
Originally published: February 12, 2020. Last Updated: February 12, 2020.