This Week in SABR: April 24, 2015

Welcome to “This Week in SABR!” Here’s what we’ve been up to as of April 24, 2015:

SABR 45: Talkin’ baseball with Steve Wynn of The Baseball Project

This summer, the passionate and knowledgeable members of SABR will learn they share a kindred spirit with members of The Baseball Project. The band’s upcoming concert at the SABR 45 convention on Thursday, June 25, 2015, at the Palmer House Hilton in Chicago seems to be a perfect match of artist and audience.

Advance presale tickets for The Baseball Project concert at SABR 45 are available for an early-bird price of $25 members/$40 non-members when you register for the SABR convention online at before May 15, 2015. Tickets will be $40 online after May 15 or until the Grand Ballroom concert venue reaches capacity.

Formed in 2007 by Scott McCaughey (Young Fresh Fellows, The Minus 5, R.E.M.) and Steve Wynn (The Dream Syndicate, Steve Wynn and the Miracle 3, Gutterball), The Baseball Project began as a way for a couple of fans to pay musical tribute to our national pastime. But The Baseball Project has since blossomed into a full-fledged, much-loved band in its own right, one which includes drummer Linda Pitmon (Steve Wynn and the Miracle 3, Zuzu’s Petals), and Peter Buck and Mike Mills, founding members of R.E.M., one of the best-selling alternative rock bands of all time.

For more information or to register for SABR 45, visit

SABR 45: Hotel room block, Cubs Upper Deck Box tickets almost sold out

Are you planning to come to SABR 45 this summer in Chicago? Our hotel room block at the Palmer House Hilton is almost sold out, so book your room today.

Join us June 24-28, 2015, at the Palmer House Hilton for a full week of baseball fun at SABR 45. Please call the hotel at (312) 726-7500 to book your room or click here to book your room at the Palmer House Hilton online. The deadline to book your room at the SABR group rate of $189/night (plus tax) is 11:59 p.m. MST Friday, May 15, 2015, or until our room block is full. See below for overflow hotel information.

The Palmer House Hilton is at 17 East Monroe Street, Chicago, IL 60603, in the heart of the downtown Loop, near two CTA stops — from O’Hare Airport, take the Blue Line to Monroe/Dearborn stop and then walk two blocks east on Monroe; from Midway Airport, take the Orange Line to the Adams/Wabash stop.

For more information on SABR 45, visit

  • Overflow hotel: If the Palmer House Hilton fills up before you’ve booked your room, we’ve reserved a small block of rooms at the nearby ACME Hotel, 15 E. Ohio Street, less than a mile north of the Palmer House Hilton and one block away from a CTA Red Line station (Grand Avenue) that takes you straight to the convention hotel (get off at the Monroe stop). Click here to book a room at the ACME Hotel for a special SABR rate of $189/night (plus tax). Or call the hotel at (312) 894-0800 to book your room; be sure to mention the SABR convention. Standard King rooms and City View Queen rooms are available at the ACME Hotel until our block runs out. 
  • Upper Deck Box ticket block for Cubs game going fast: Our block of tickets in the Upper Deck Box-Outfield section ($48) for the Cubs-Dodgers game on Thursday afternoon, June 25, at Wrigley Field is almost sold out now. Once they sell out, tickets will no longer be available in that section when you register online. However, tickets are still available in our Terrace Reserved-Outfield block ($38) until Friday, May 15. This game is expected to sell out and our ticket block is only available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Game tickets in the SABR block will NOT be available for purchase on-site at the convention. Visit to register.

Students: Last call to apply for SABR 45 Yoseloff Scholarship

With generous funding from The Anthony A. Yoseloff Foundation, Inc., SABR will award up to four scholarships to high school or college students to attend SABR 45 on June 24-28, 2015, in Chicago, Illinois. This scholarship will pay for registration, transportation and lodging (double occupancy) up to a total value of $1,250.

The objective of this scholarship fund is to encourage high school and college-level student engagement with baseball research and to engender an active interest in baseball and SABR. The Yoseloff scholarship is to assist young researchers who want to attend SABR’s annual convention and to introduce them to fellow SABR members. Through this fund, SABR hopes to inspire future baseball research, expose students to high-quality research and build the research capability of interested students.

Last call! All applications must be postmarked or e-mailed to Jeff Schatzki at no later than FRIDAY, APRIL 24, 2015. That’s today!

For complete details and criteria, click here.

In Memoriam: Ray Nemec, SABR founding member

Ray Nemec, 85, one of SABR’s founding members and the first chairman of SABR’s Minor Leagues Research Committee, died on Friday, April 17 in Naperville, Illinois.

Honored with the Henry Chadwick Award in 2012, Nemec was a pioneer in compiling and correcting the lifetime records of more than 100,000 professional players at all levels. Hall of Fame historian Lee Allen called him “the foremost authority on minor league players.” He served as an invaluable resource for three generations of baseball researchers, and he was always willing to provide statistical information to anyone who asked. His work was cited in countless books and articles. He enjoyed compiling statistics for minor or independent leagues that never included their information in the annual Spalding or Reach baseball guides that served as the official league record books for most of the 20th century.

At the time of SABR’s founding in 1971, Nemec had already spent 30 years tracking minor league statistics and box scores, often traveling throughout the Midwest to do so. He was one of the first people that SABR founder L. Robert Davids contacted about setting up the Society’s first meeting on August 10, 1971, at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, which Nemec attended with 15 other researchers. Nemec was instrumental in the 1978 publication of SABR’s Minor League Stars, the first comprehensive listing of career records for minor league players, and two other volumes after that. He also tracked down dozens of players of African-American descent who played professional baseball in the 19th century, greatly enhancing our knowledge of a then-overlooked area of baseball research.

Nemec’s research helped lay the groundwork for SABR’s Minor Leagues Database, which now can be accessed online at When he first began researching the minor leagues, he told the Joliet Herald in 1997, he thought he might one day be able to compile “all records for all players.” That ambitious goal might never be attainable, since so much information from long ago remains lost to history. But we’re a lot closer to that goal than we once were, thanks to one of the most significant figures in the baseball research community.

Services were held on Wednesday, April 22 at SS. Peter & Paul Catholic Church in Naperville, Illinois. Interment will be private. In lieu of flowers, donations can made to Sisters of the Holy Family of Nazareth, 310 N River Road, Des Plaines, IL 60016, Attn.: Sister M. Phyllis.

Read the full obituary by clicking here.

Last call: Vote in 2015 SABR Board of Directors election

SABR members, you should have received an e-mail from on Wednesday, April 15 and a reminder e-mail on Wednesday, April 22 with a link to vote in the 2015 SABR Board of Directors election. This year’s election includes four ballot items: the election of the SABR President, Secretary, one Director’s position, and one By-Laws amendment change.

If you did not receive your voting e-mail from, please contact Jacob Pomrenke to have the ballot re-sent.

The poll will close at 11:59 p.m. Mountain Standard Time Wednesday, April 29. The only way to vote online is through the link you will receive by e-mail. All e-mails will come from the address (If you do not have an e-mail address on file with SABR, the ballot has been sent to you by mail. Please return it to the SABR office at 4455 E. Camelback Rd., Ste. D-140, Phoenix, AZ 85018 by Wednesday, April 29.)

The candidates up for election in 2015 are:

For President

  • Vince Gennaro (incumbent)

For Secretary

  • Todd Lebowitz (incumbent)

For Director

  • George R. Skornickel
  • Ty Waterman (incumbent)

You can read the proposed By-Laws changes, candidate biographies, along with full descriptions of the positions and responses the candidates made to a series of questions, in the 2015 SABR Election Guide below:

For more information on the 2015 SABR election, click here.

SABR 45: Early registration, all-inclusive discounts close on May 15

Early registration for the SABR 45 convention, June 24-28, 2015, at the Palmer House Hilton in Chicago, is now available at Just a reminder that our ticket block for the Cubs-Dodgers game on Thursday, June 25 at Wrigley Field is limited and the game is expected to sell out. Game tickets in the SABR block will not be available after early registration ends on May 15 and will not be sold on-site during the convention.

Click here for complete information on SABR 45 registration rates, all-inclusive packages, and optional sessions. Or click here to register for SABR 45. More details on guest speakers, panelists, and presenters will be announced soon.

  • Conference registration: Click here for complete information on SABR 45 registration rates. Once again, we’re offering a discounted all-inclusive package for the annual SABR convention. For a savings of $44 off the regular rate, SABR members can get:

         — 1 full conference registration (regular rate: $199)
         — Choose: 1 Upper Deck Box ticket to the Cubs game on Thursday, June 25 (regular: $48) OR 1 Terrace Reserved ticket (regular: $38)
         — 1 round-trip ticket on the CTA Red Line train to and from Wrigley Field (regular: $6)
         — 1 ticket to the Awards Luncheon on Friday, June 26 (regular: $50)

    The all-inclusive package is available to SABR members for $259 with an Upper Deck Box ticket or $249 with a Terrace Reserved ticket to the Cubs game instead, plus all of the above amenities. Please note: The all-inclusive packages are only available until May 15, 2015. Click here to register for SABR 45.

  • Cubs ballgame: At SABR 45, we’ll be attending the Cubs-Dodgers game on Thursday afternoon, June 25, at Wrigley Field. The SABR block of tickets is available in two sections when you register: Upper Deck Box-Outfield ($48) or Terrace Reserved-Outfield ($38). Update: Our Upper Deck Box block is almost sold out, so once they sell out, tickets will no longer be available in that section when you register online. Tickets are still available in the Terrace Reserved section until Friday, May 15. This game is expected to sell out and our ticket block is only available on a first-come, first-serve basis through Friday, May 15, 2015. Game tickets in the SABR block will NOT be available for purchase on-site at the convention. Please note: Your purchase of a SABR 45 all-inclusive package includes round-trip transportation to and from Wrigley Field on the CTA Red Line train. (Purchasing a game ticket as part of regular/a la carte registration does NOT include transportation.) Click here for more details on SABR 45 registration.
  • The Baseball Project concert: On Thursday evening, June 25, SABR 45 attendees will have a special opportunity to see The Baseball Project in concert in the Grand Ballroom at the Palmer House Hilton. Advance presale tickets are available for $25 members/$40 non-members when you register for SABR 45 before May 15, 2015. Tickets will be $40 online after May 15 or until the concert venue reaches capacity. Click here for more details. 

All-Star lineup of guest speakers: SABR 45 will include top featured speakers from around the baseball world — front office executives, players, managers, scouts, writers, and analysts — plus innovative panel discussions on the Cubs, White Sox, the Negro Leagues, women in baseball, and more. See below for details on featured panels as we announce them:

  • Broadcasters Panel: Cubs announcers Len Kasper, Jim Deshaies, and Ron Coomer, and moderator Curt Smith. Click here for more details. 
  • Negro Leagues Panel: Panelists include former Negro Leagues pitchers Al Spearman and Ernie Westfield, and moderator Larry Lester. Click here for more details.
  • More panels to be announced soon!

Please note: The SABR 45 all-inclusive package includes 1 full conference registration; 1 ticket to the Cubs game on Thursday, June 25; 1 round-trip ticket on the CTA Red Line train; and 1 ticket to the Awards Luncheon on Friday, June 26. It does NOT include any other optional events such as the Downtown Baseball Walking Tour on Wednesday, June 24, The Baseball Project concert on Thursday, June 25, or the Historical Ballpark Sites Bus Tour on Sunday, June 28. Those tickets must be purchased separately.

All SABR 45 attendees will also receive a souvenir print edition of The National Pastime, our annual convention journal, focusing on baseball teams, players and events in the Chicago area. All SABR members, whether you attend the convention or not, will receive the expanded e-book edition of The National Pastime in their inboxes later this summer. Click here to register for SABR 45.

For more information on SABR 45, visit

Negro Leaguer Wesley Barrow to receive new grave marker tomorrow in New Orleans

On Saturday, April 25, at 2 p.m., community volunteers, city of Gretna officials and former local Negro Leagues baseball players will gather at New Hope Baptist Church Cemetery in Gretna, Louisiana, to dedicate a new grave marker for Wesley Barrow, a New Orleans African-American baseball legend who influenced hundreds, if not thousands, of young men and players locally and nationally.

The SABR Schott-Pelican Chapter will also hold its quarterly spring meeting on Saturday, April 25 from 10 a.m.-12 p.m. at the Holiday Inn New Orleans West Bank Tower (275 Whitney Avenue, Room 210 upstairs) in Gretna. All baseball fans are welcome to attend the SABR meeting and the dedication ceremony afterward.

Barrow enjoyed a 40-plus-year career in America’s pastime as a player and manager for numerous local African-American sandlot, semipro and professional teams during the era of baseball segregation and beyond.

His talent for discovering and development the talent and character of young players earned him the nickname “the Skipper” and stints as the pilot of teams across the country as well, including the Baltimore Black Sox and Portland Rosebuds.

However, despite his massive influence on the local and national black baseball scene, when Barrow died suddenly on Christmas Eve 1965, he was buried in an unmarked grave in New Hope Baptist Church Cemetery in Gretna.

His burial spot remained anonymous until this spring, when Gretna City Councilman Milton Crosby, who played for Barrow on the New Orleans Black Pelicans, and SABR member Ryan Whirty, a Negro Leagues journalist and researcher, led an effort to raise money to purchase a marker for Barrow’s grave.

Earlier this month, the burial stone was erected on Barrow’s grave, a process that also included a fresh coat of white paint on the cement border around Barrow’s final resting place.

Click here to learn more.

  • Donate to SABR’s Negro Leagues Baseball Grave Marker Project: Click here to make a tax-deductible contribution; your support will be used to help locate the gravesites of former ballplayers from the Negro Leagues and adorn them with proper headstones.

Check out photos and highlights from the 2015 SABR Frederick Ivor-Campbell 19th Century Conference

Dirty play, the role of African Americans, media coverage, and the price of admission. The mention of these subjects would be familiar to any 21st century baseball fan.

On April 17-18, 2015, modern fans learned those issues were quite common as far back as the 1850s. The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum hosted SABR’s seventh annual Frederick Ivor-Campbell 19th Century Base Ball Conference. More than 60 members attended the two-day symposium, featuring more than a dozen presentations covering various topics relating to the early days of baseball — or, as it was spelled, base ball.

The 2015 conference was highlighted by a keynote address from baseball historian Jerrold Casway, along with a panel discussion, “Sporting News: Baseball in the 19th Century Press” with Jim Overmyer, Bob Tholkes, George Thompson, and John Thorn; a special presentation by James Brunson III on black baseball; a Member Spotlight interview of Bob Bailey by Tom Simon; plus book signings and research presentations.

“It seemed to have really been a lively conference this year,” committee chair Peter Mancuso said. “There were some presentations, I think, that really surprised a lot of people, and it really got some juices flowing in the room. It’s always gratifying to see that.

“There were certain topics that were presented that were just incredibly rich, and you say, ‘Wow, I wish we had a couple more hours to hear more about this topic.’”

— Matt Rothenberg

Last call: 2015 Jerry Malloy Negro League Conference call for papers

The 18th annual Jerry Malloy Negro League Conference — August 6-8, 2015, at the Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh Downtown in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania — will celebrate the rich history of black baseball in Pittsburgh.

We welcome proposals for oral and poster presentations from all research fields. Click here for detailed criteria and submission guidelines. All proposals must be sent to by Friday, April 24, 2015.

 Previous presenters have included college faculty, public school teachers, graduate students, and independent scholars. Presentations may focus on any topic related to the theme, “Baseball’s Best: the Grays and the Crawfords,” or other Negro Leagues issues. Some possibilities include: Josh Gibson, Pittsburgh Crawfords, Gus Greenlee, Cum Posey, Vic Harris, Cool Papa Bell, the Crawford Grill, and many others.  

The 2015 Jerry Malloy Negro League Conference is open to all baseball, history and sports fans of all ages.

Visit for information on the 2015 Essay Contest, Art Contest, and Library Grant Program.

Get a 20% discount off MLB.TV or MiLB.TV subscriptions in 2015

The 2015 season has begun, and SABR members have the opportunity to take advantage of two special offers from MLB Advanced Media for the 2015 season.

In addition to the 20% discount off MLB.TV Premium Monthly subscriptions that SABR members receive in 2015, you can also now get a 20% discount off MiLB.TV Yearly subscriptions all season long.

With MiLB.TV, you can watch more than 5,000 Minor League Baseball games streamed live and on-demand online, including select All-Star and postseason games. Take the action on the go on select Apple devices with the free MiLB First Pitch App. Games involve affiliates of all 30 MLB clubs. Complete game archives are available any time on demand.

For any questions about your subscriptions, please contact MLB.TV Customer Service or visit MiLB.TV.

Listen to Behind the Numbers: Baseball SABR Style on SiriusXM

We invite you to listen to Behind the Numbers: Baseball SABR Style on SiriusXM, a new radio show hosted by SABR President Vince Gennaro, on Sunday nights on MLB Network Radio.

Baseball SABR Style focuses on examining and interpreting the statistical analysis that plays a critical role in baseball today. It will air weekly throughout the year on MLB Network Radio, available to subscribers nationwide on XM channel 89, Sirius channel 209, and on the SiriusXM Internet Radio App. (Recent shows are available afterward in the “on-demand” section of the SiriusXM app or website.)

For more information, click here.

Working the game: An interview with Tigers radio announcer Dan Dickerson

Chuck Hildebrandt, chair of SABR’s Baseball and the Media Committee, has launched a new series at called “Working the Game,” which features interviews with some of the broadcasting and journalism professionals who work every day in baseball. Loosely based on the Slate podcast “Working,” these interviews attempt to reveal what it is like to work as a baseball media professional on a day to day basis. Here’s an excerpt:

This first interview takes place with Dan Dickerson, the play-by-play announcer for the Detroit Tigers Radio Network. Dickerson is a veteran Michigan sports announcer who is serving his 16th season in the booth, and his 13th as the lead play-by-play radio voice of the Tigers. Dickerson made his Tigers debut in 2000 alongside Hall of Fame broadcaster Ernie Harwell. Dickerson is available on Twitter at @Dan_Dickerson.

When did you become aware that you wanted to seriously pursue a career as a baseball broadcaster?

Fall term, freshman year, Ohio Wesleyan, 1976, I fell into radio.  They had a 10-watt radio station and you could do anything you wanted. I was a DJ, but then I saw there was a need for someone to do Ohio Wesleyan football, and that was my first play-by-play. I was sitting in the pressbox, corrugated plastic around two chairs and a table, and I was in hog heaven!  So I got hooked on it.

Read the full article here:

  • For more original articles like this, including “A British Newspaper Reporter’s Take on the 1956 World Series” and a visionary 1971 article from SABR member Philip Hochberg about the future of sports on cable TV, visit the SABR Baseball and the Media Committee’s website at

8 new biographies published by the SABR BioProject

Eight new biographies were posted as part of the SABR Baseball Biography Project, which brings us to a total of 3,161 published biographies. Here are the new bios:

All new biographies can be found here:

You can find the SABR BioProject at

Bios on more than just ballplayers: The ambitious goal of the SABR Baseball Biography Project is to publish a full-life biography of every major league player in history. But SABR members write about a lot more than just ballplayers. In addition, we have pages for Ballparks, Broadcasters, Executives, Managers, Scouts, Spouses, Umpires and a lot more on the BioProject website. You can browse all of these categories at So if you’ve ever thought, “Hey, that person (or ballpark) should get the full BioProject treatment” — write the story and we’ll publish it!

Get involved! If you’d like to help contribute to the SABR BioProject, visit our BioProject Resources page or read the FAQs section to get started. We’re also looking to expand the BioProject to include all “encyclopedic” articles on baseball-related subjects from past SABR publications or committee newsletters. If you come across an article you think should be included in the SABR “baseball repository” at the BioProject, send a copy or link to or

ICYMI: Highlights from last week’s This Week in SABR

We’ve heard your feedback: Some of you have said you look forward to “This Week in SABR” every Friday, but sometimes there are just too many compelling articles and announcements to read every week. We’re not complaining — hey, keep up the great work! — but we know the feeling. So in an effort to make the length of this newsletter more manageable to read, we’ll summarize some of the repeating/recurring announcements in a special “In Case You Missed It (ICYMI)” section of “This Week in SABR”.

Here are some major headlines from recent weeks that we don’t want you to miss:

All previous editions of This Week in SABR can be found here:

Welcome, new members!

We’d like to welcome all of our new SABR members who have joined this week. You can find all Members-Only resources at and the New Member Handbook can be downloaded here.

Please give these new members a warm welcome and help them make the most of their membership by giving them the opportunity to get involved in their local chapter or a research committee.

You can find contact information for any SABR member in the online membership directory (

Name Hometown     Name Hometown
Matthew Albertson Havertown, PA     Kristin Johnson San Diego, CA
Marshall Austin Lantana, FL     Bill Maselunas Dallas, TX
Larry Breslow Surprise, AZ     James Meadows Three Rivers, MI
Nick Davis Dorchester, ON     Dave Rouleau Quebec City, QC
Scott Epstein Newton, MA     Edward Ward Joliet, IL
Russell Harper Helena, MT     Jay Youngclaus Austin, TX


Research Committee news

Here are the new SABR research committee updates for this week:

  • Oral History Committee: The SABR Oral History Committee would like your feedback. A 10-question survey relating to the committee and its objectives can be found at: For any questions, please contact committee chair John McMurray.

Find all SABR research committee newsletters at

Regional Chapter news

Here are the new regional chapter updates for this week:

Visit for more information on SABR regional chapters.

SABR Events Calendar

Here is a list of upcoming SABR events:

All SABR meetings and events are open to the public. Feel free to bring a baseball-loving friend … and make many new ones! Check out the SABR Events Calendar at

Around the Web

Here are some recent articles published by and about SABR members:

Read these articles and more at

This Week in SABR is compiled by Jacob Pomrenke. If you would like us to include an upcoming event, article or any other information in “This Week in SABR,” e-mail

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Originally published: April 24, 2015. Last Updated: April 3, 2020.