From Dale Shrull at the Grand Junction Daily Sentinel on November 26, 2016, with mention of SABR member Larry Gerlach:
It’s such a simple act. But for many American boys, especially from older generations, it had the most subtle and memorable impact on a youngster’s life.
The pop of a leather glove, maybe a smile from the stern father, an easy conversation about baseball.
A handful of minutes with a father usually too busy or too tired to find the time to spend with his son.
Having a catch with dad — a special time and an amazing memory.
It was that time in the backyard tossing a baseball back and forth with his dad that still resonates with Larry Gerlach even after more than six decades.
What started with a simple game of catch with his father led to fascination with the national pastime, a fascination and intrigue so powerful that Gerlach collected every baseball book imaginable. He gathered close to 1,400 different titles about the game, the players, the scandals and the bottomless realm of history that surrounds the game.
“I’d play catch with my dad and we’d talk baseball,” Gerlach said at a ceremony at Colorado Mesa University earlier this month.
The retired professor of history at the University of Utah wanted to find a home for his massive book collection, and he found it at Colorado Mesa, which will keep the collection on the shelves of Tomlinson Library for all to peruse.
Originally published: November 28, 2016. Last Updated: November 28, 2016.