This Week in SABR: July 29, 2011

Here’s what we’ve been up to as of July 29, 2011:

Many twists and turns in history of MLB trading deadline

The Major League Baseball trading deadline is one of our favorite weeks of the season. At the end of every July — whether your team is fighting to stay in contention for a pennant or long out of it — you know somebody in that clubhouse is anxiously awaiting a call with orders to report to a new city. The big names this month seem to be Carlos Beltran and Ubaldo Jimenez; in the past, we’ve seen stars such as Randy Johnson, Rickey Henderson and John Smoltz alter the course of their franchises’ histories for years to come.

But did you know the July 31 nonwaiver trade deadline has only been around since 1986? It had been June 15 for the previous six decades, and the deadline has made a lot of other twists and turns to get to where we are today.

As you pay attention to the TV tickers and trade-rumor websites to see who your team will be acquiring or giving up, we hope you enjoy this compilation of research conducted by SABR members Cliff Blau, Mike Lynch and Ted Leavengood, along with a list from our friends at Baseball Prospectus, looking back on the MLB trading deadline.

Blyleven no longer ‘Only the Lonely’

SABR member Rich Lederer’s tireless quest to get Bert Blyleven inducted into the Hall of Fame began in December 2003, when he wrote an article titled “Only the Lonely: The Hall of Fame Trials and Tribulations of Bert Blyleven.” The Roy Orbison song title was chosen because Blyleven was conspicuously missing from the Hall of Fame while all the pitchers ranked around him in several of the most important stats had already been inducted or were locks to be enshrined in their first year of eligibility.

Eight election cycles later and nobody can call Blyleven “Only the Lonely” any longer. While Blyleven was on the ballot far too long, his date with destiny finally arrived last Sunday when he was officially inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame. Rich and his wife, Barbara, sat in the Blyleven family section during the ceremony as guests of Bert and his wife, Gayle.

Check out Rich’s stories and photos from Induction Weekend in Cooperstown at

Jean Hastings Ardell: On Patriotism, Baseball and Poetry

The Southern California-based Baseball Reliquary, headed by SABR member Terry Cannon, held its annual “Shrine of the Eternals” induction ceremony on July 17 at the Pasadena Central Library in Pasadena, California. Inductees for the Shrine of the Eternals — an alternative to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown — are chosen on the basis of: distinctiveness of play (good or bad); the uniqueness of character and personality; and the imprint that the individual has made on the baseball landscape. This year’s inductees were: 1960s Dodgers speedster Maury Wills; one-armed World War II-era outfielder Pete Gray; and Ted Giannoulas, the man behind the San Diego Chicken mascot.

The keynote speech for last Sunday’s ceremony was delivered by SABR member Jean Hastings Ardell, author of the best-selling “Breaking Into Baseball: Women and the National Pastime.” Ardell has graciously allowed to publish her prepared remarks from the Baseball Reliquary induction ceremony.

Help us rank the top baseball storylines of the SABR Era

In anticipation of SABR’s 40th anniversary in August, we’re compiling a list of the top 40 storylines in baseball during what we’re calling the SABR Era (1971-2011).

Over the last few weeks, we’ve solicited suggestions from SABR members and received more than one hundred responses — everything from “the introduction of the designated hitter” to “the steroids era” to “Roy Halladay’s 2010 postseason no-hitter.” We took the 16 most suggested ideas and now we want you to rank them.

Click the link below to rank the top selections:

The final list will be revealed in conjunction with our 40th anniversary in August.

SABR publications available for purchase at University of Nebraska Press

The University of Nebraska Press offers discounts on many SABR publications and an opportunity for members to purchase extra copies of the Spring 2011 Baseball Research Journal and this year’s convention publication, The National Pastime: Endless Seasons, which focuses on baseball in the Southern California region.

In addition, the University of Nebraska Press offers more than 50 SABR publications — including most issues of the BRJ from 1985 to the present, many TNP editions and some convention publications — for purchase at discounted prices.

You can find all SABR publications available at the University of Nebraska Press by clicking here.

Five new biographies posted at SABR BioProject

Five new biographies were posted this week as part of the SABR Baseball Biography Project, bringing us to a total of 1,637 published biographies:

All new biographies can be found here:

Writing a biography for the BioProject is an easy way to get involved as a SABR member. Find out how by visiting our BioProject Resources page or reading the FAQs section.

  • Read more from the BioProject: One hundred years ago Thursday, one of the game’s all-time greatest characters walked into the New York Giants’ team hotel and asked to speak to manager John McGraw. Here’s Gabriel Schechter’s biography on the obscure “pitcher” who, legend has it, inspired the Giants to three straight National League pennants … Charlie “Victory” Faust.

View photo galleries from 2011 Jerry Malloy Negro League Conference

The 14th annual Jerry Malloy Negro League Conference took place July 21-23, 2011, in Indianapolis, Indiana.

The Malloy Conference, hosted by SABR’s Negro Leagues Committee, promotes activities to enhance scholarly, educational, and literary objectives. For the past 13 years, the event has been the only symposium dedicated exclusively to the examination and promotion of black baseball history. The conference is open to baseball and history fans of all ages.

View photos from the conference here and check out more photos from the Indianapolis Star here.

Upcoming SABR events:

In other recent SABR news:

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

Find more information about SABR and at the Members’ Info page here:

Originally published: July 29, 2011. Last Updated: April 3, 2020.