This Week in SABR: November 1, 2013

Welcome to “This Week in SABR!” Here’s what we’ve been up to as of November 1, 2013:

Recapping the recent Fall Classic

Well, you can’t say it wasn’t entertaining! The 2013 World Series between the Boston Red Sox and St. Louis Cardinals might have been a little confusing and a little sloppy, but ultimately it left baseball fans with a lot to talk about — and a little history was made, too.

You can start with one of the most bizarre game-ending plays in World Series history: umpire Jim Joyce’s (correct) obstruction call in the ninth inning of Game 3 to give the St. Louis Cardinals a 5-4 win on Saturday night. As Cliff Corcoran writes at, it’s the first time any World Series game ended with an obstruction call and it brings to mind other non-conventional finishes, such as Babe Ruth’s steal attempt to end the 1926 World Series and J.C. Martin’s walkoff bunt to end Game 4 in 1969 (a play where obstruction was famously not called.) John Thorn reminds us of instances of game-ending obstruction calls from baseball’s early days at Our Game.

We didn’t have to wait long for another “first”: In Game 4 on Sunday, Cardinals rookie Kolten Wong was picked off first base by Red Sox closer Koji Uehara to end the game with the powerful Carlos Beltran at the plate as the tying run. No World Series game before Sunday had ever ended with a pickoff, though a few games have ended with players being thrown out on the bases (or TOOTBLANs, as some would call it.)

Then, behind Jon Lester and John Lackey, the Red Sox held the Cardinals to two runs in the final two games and Boston captured its third World Series championship in the last decade — capping off another quiet October for fans of offense, as Mike Petriello writes at FanGraphs. It was the first time the Red Sox clinched a World Series championship at Fenway Park in 95 years, but Glenn Stout explains why the 1918 World Series didn’t exactly inspire Red Sox fans to celebrate with a city-wide parade like they will tomorrow.

(Speaking of the parade, the SABR Boston Chapter was forced to postpone its fall meeting tomorrow, but Red Sox fans probably don’t mind too much. Read chapter leader Joanne Hulbert’s explanation below.)

Finally, we turn our attention away from the field and toward the press box — where SABR member Andy Andres had a great seat to record the final out of Game 6, as you’ll find out by reading the Boston Globe‘s profile of him.

So congratulations, Red Sox fans, on a memorable and triumphant 2013 season. For the rest of you, prepare the hot stove: Pitchers and catchers report in 106 days!

Here are some other World Series-related stories we thought you’d enjoy:

Rawlings Gold Glove Award winners announced

Beginning in 2013, the selection process for the Rawlings Gold Glove Awards now includes a statistical component, the SABR Defensive Index™ (SDI™), developed by the SABR Defensive Committee. The Gold Glove winners were announced on ESPN’s “Baseball Tonight” on October 29.

Here are the winners of the 2013 Rawlings Gold Glove Awards, announced Tuesday night:

Position AL Player Award     NL Player Award
P R.A. Dickey 1st     Adam Wainwright 2nd
C Salvador Perez 1st     Yadier Molina 6th
1B Eric Hosmer 1st     Paul Goldschmidt 1st
2B Dustin Pedroia 3rd     Brandon Phillips 4th
SS J.J. Hardy 2nd     Andrelton Simmons 1st
3B Manny Machado 1st     Nolan Arenado 1st
LF Alex Gordon 3rd     Carlos Gonzalez 3rd
CF Adam Jones 3rd     Carlos Gomez 1st
RF Shane Victorino 4th     Gerardo Parra 2nd


The SABR Defensive Index draws on and aggregates two types of existing defensive metrics: those derived from batted ball, location-based data and those collected from play-by-play accounts. The three metrics representing batted ball data include Defensive Runs Saved from Baseball Info Solutions, Ultimate Zone Rating developed by noted sabermetrician Mitchel Lichtman, and Runs Effectively Defended built by SABR Defensive Committee member Chris Dial. The two metrics included in the SDI originating from play-by-play data are Defensive Regression Analysis, created by committee member Michael Humphreys, and Total Zone Rating.

The SABR Defensive Index accounts for 30 total “votes” — or approximately 25 percent of the Rawlings Gold Glove Award selection process — that was added to the votes from the managers and coaches.

Rawlings revealed the revised selection process overview in March as part of its new collaboration with SABR. Since that announcement, SABR enlisted an independent committee of experts in baseball analytics and defensive measurement to devise the SDI. The SABR Defensive Committee includes:

  • Committee chair Vince Gennaro, SABR President and author of Diamond Dollars: The Economics of Winning in Baseball
  • Sean Forman, founder of
  • John Dewan, owner of Baseball Info Solutions
  • Bo Moon, executive vice president and co-founder of Bloomberg Sports
  • Chris Dial, author and recognized expert on defensive metrics
  • Michael Humphreys, author of Wizardry: Baseball’s All-Time Greatest Fielders Revealed
  • F.X. Flinn, SABR board of directors

For more details on the new SABR Defensive Index, click here

Vote for Rawlings Platinum Glove Award winners: In 2011, Rawlings also introduced the Rawlings Platinum Glove Award to honor the best defender in each League among the Rawlings Gold Glove Award winners in each season.

The SDI’s ability to accurately compare players from different positions will help determine the updated Rawlings Platinum Glove Award, presented by SABR. Fans will continue to have a voice during this process, and can cast their vote for the Rawlings Platinum Glove Award winners by clicking here.

St. Louis catcher Yadier Molina and Texas third baseman Adrian Beltre won their respective league’s Rawlings Platinum Glove Award in each of the past two seasons.

Related links:

Fifth annual SABR AFL Conference kicks off

The Hot Stove League kicked off in fine fashion on Thursday, October 31 with the start of the fifth annual SABR Arizona Fall League Conference.

About 25 conference guests attended an AFL game between the Scottsdale Scorpions and Mesa Solar Sox on Thursday afternoon at Hohokam Park in Mesa, then had dinner at the legendary baseball hangout Don and Charlie’s in Scottsdale with special guest and longtime SABR member Roland Hemond — founder of the Arizona Fall League — and major league alumni Lou Klimchock, Ron Davis, Dave Hilton and Ken Phelps.

The conference runs through Saturday, November 2 and includes three more AFL games plus a pregame ballpark dinner at Talking Stick at Salt River with special guest speaker Mark Davis, 1989 National League Cy Young Award winner and now a minor league pitching coach in the Kansas City Royals organization. Davis spent 15 years in the major leagues with the Phillies, Giants, Padres, Royals, Braves and Brewers.

On Saturday morning, attendees will join members of SABR’s Flame Delhi (Arizona) Chapter for their regional fall meeting. Saturday night is always a highlight of the conference as the top prospects from every organization participate in the AFL Fall Stars game at Surprise Stadium.

For more details and a complete schedule, visit

Check out some early photos from the SABR AFL Conference here: /latest/fifth-annual-sabr-arizona-fall-league-conference-kicks

Almost time to renew your SABR membership

For those of you whose SABR memberships expire on December 31 — that is, anyone who joined before August 2012; you can check your current membership status here — it’s almost time for you to renew. We’re excited about the upcoming year ahead of us and we hope you’ll take advantage of all the great membership benefits offered to SABR members in 2014. Here’s a short list:


You can renew your membership for 1 year or 3 years online at the SABR Store; by phone at (602) 343-6450; or by mailing this downloadable PDF form and your payment to the SABR office at 4455 E. Camelback Road, Ste. D-140, Phoenix, AZ 85018.

Dues are the same as they have been in recent years: for this, you get two editions of the Baseball Research Journal, the expanded e-book edition of The National Pastime; 6-8 free e-books published by the SABR Digital Library; “This Week in SABR” every Friday; access to research resources such as Paper of Record (with complete archives of The Sporting News); discounts to all SABR conferences such as the National Convention (Houston 2014), the SABR Analytics Conference, the Jerry Malloy Negro League Conference, and the Frederick Ivor-Campbell 19th Century Conference; discounts to MLB.TV, the Store and much, much more.

We believe SABR has something for everyone, from the active researcher to someone passionate about baseball. We hope you’ll invite your friends, colleagues and family members to join at

Donate to SABR and support the future of baseball research

Unlike many nonprofit organizations that hold monthly donation pledge drives and continually solicit donations, SABR has never been proactive about asking for donations. However, like all other nonprofit 501(c)3 organizations, SABR relies heavily on generous donations to supplement its membership dues and help the organization survive and prosper. We appreciate those members who have given in the past and continue to donate to SABR. As SABR continues to serve its members and move forward with exciting new member opportunities, we are going to become more proactive by asking our passionate and knowledgeable members to support their very special organization.

All donations to SABR are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. We thank you for supporting SABR and baseball research in all its forms.

To make a donation to support SABR, visit

— Marc Appleman, SABR Executive Director

Registration now open for 2014 SABR Analytics Conference

SABR has a long and storied history with baseball statistical analysis, evidenced by the link between our name and sabermetrics. While SABR is a multi-faceted organization involved in virtually every aspect of baseball, we have taken a major step to re-connect with our beginnings by producing and hosting the third annual:

SABR Analytics Conference
March 13-15, 2014
Hyatt Regency Phoenix
Phoenix, Arizona

Once again, we’re bringing together the top minds of the baseball analytic community under one roof to discuss, debate and share insightful ways to analyze and examine the great game of baseball.

The schedule will consist of a combination of Guest Speakers, Panels and Research Presentations — plus the unique Diamond Dollars Case Competition, in which undergraduate, graduate and law school students from across the country analyze and present a real baseball operations decision.

  • Early registration rates:
      — SABR members: $395 early rate; $595 full rate.
      — Non-SABR members: $495 early rate; $695 full rate. If you are not a SABR member, click here to join.
      — Students: $350; includes one-year membership to SABR. Must be a currently enrolled high school or college student. Please e-mail Deb Jayne with a photocopy of your student ID to receive the registration promo code.
    Please note: Lunch is included with your registration on Friday, March 14 and Saturday, March 15. The mixer/welcome reception is included with your registration on Thursday, March 13. Specify any special dietary needs when you register.
  • Hotel: The 2014 SABR Analytics Conference will be held at the Hyatt Regency Phoenix, 122 N. 2nd St., Phoenix, AZ 85004. Click here to book your hotel room at the special SABR group rate of $169/night (plus tax.) Or call (602) 252-1234 and mention that you’re with the SABR Analytics Conference.

    Complimentary wireless Internet is available in all rooms booked under the SABR block. The cutoff date to book your room is February 18, 2014. The SABR group rate is only available for the nights of March 10 to March 18, 2014, based on availability. Book your room today! 

Some of the topics we are planning to cover include:

  • General Managers Panel on how analytics shapes front-office decisions
  • Player Panel – how major league players take advantage of analytics
  • Biometrics/Injury Prevention Panel  NEW!
  • International Baseball Panel  NEW!
  • Baseball Scouting Panel  NEW!

Check back soon at as we announce more featured speakers, panels and presentations!

For complete coverage of the 2013 SABR Analytics Conference, visit

Dollar Sign on the Muscle, by SABR member Kevin Kerrane, returns to the spotlight

What we’re reading today: This wonderful profile of SABR member Kevin Kerrane by Andy McCullough at Sports on Earth:

The rarity rests behind a stack of papers on a desk inside a first-floor office at the University of Delaware. Kevin Kerrane rises from his chair to fetch it. He is a few weeks from his 72nd birthday, an English professor with snow-white hair and a matching mustache. Above him looms Clint Eastwood on a poster for Le Bon, La Brute et Le Truand.

He fishes past his iMac and retrieves a first-edition copy of his book, Dollar Sign on the Muscle. Inside is a message inscribed to his mother. More than 30 years ago, Kerrane shadowed the scouts of the Philadelphia Phillies and documented the arcane habits of their profession. He published the book in 1984 and saw it certified as a cult classic in the subsequent decades. In 2002, Sports Illustrated deemed it one of the 100 best sports books ever written, a tome that lionized one generation of scouts and galvanized another.

After it went out of print about 10 years ago, its price on the secondary market hit triple digits. But soon, remarks a visitor to his Memorial Hall office one day last week, the price of this keepsake may plummet. The time to make a quick $100 is now.

“That’s a good point!” Kerrane says, eyes glittering with laughter. “This thing is going to drop in value precipitously any minute.”

In the first week of November, Baseball Prospectus will release a new edition of the book, complete with an epilogue that explores scouting in 2013. During this past season, Kerrane returned to the scene of his literary achievement. Once again he watched scouts watch players. He absorbed sunshine and wisdom. He wrote of how the landscape has changed, and how it has stayed the same. Now a new generation of readers can experience the stories that influenced so many baseball men.

Read the full article here:

Related links:

Retroactive All-Star Game Project: 1919 NL stars survive nail-biter

Note: This game summary is from the Retroactive All-Star Game Project. Voting was conducted to select retroactive MLB All-Star teams from the 1919 season and the games were simulated using Out of the Park 14. 

In the third battle of stars in the annual All-Star Game that began three years ago, the National League copped a hard-fought 4-3 victory that saw the tying run standing only 90 feet away and the winning run on second when Fred Toney came in and saved the win at Boston’s Fenway Park.  The senior circuit now holds a 2-1 lead in All-Star contests and hopes to increase their advantage next year when they’ll return to Boston and host the American League at Braves Field.

Highlights and outstanding players include:

  • Eddie Collins going 3 for 3 with a walk and a run scored, but also committing a crucial error in the ninth inning.
  • George Sisler going 2 for 4 with a double and an RBI.
  • Eddie Cicotte and Lefty Williams combing to throw 4 2/3 innings of scoreless ball and allowing only three hits.
  • Larry Doyle recording a hit and a walk, fielding nine chances flawlessly and turning two double plays.
  • Rogers Hornsby recording his second career All-Star Game triple, and driving in and scoring a run.
  • Benny Kauff, Ed Konetchy, Casey Stengel and Heinie Groh stealing a base apiece.
  • Dutch Ruether allowing only two hits in three innings of relief.

You can find a full account of the game, box score, game log and stats here.  

Learn more about the Retroactive All-Star Game Project by clicking here.

— Mike Lynch

SABR Boston Chapter meeting on Nov. 2 postponed due to World Series parade

Due to circumstances beyond our control, it has come to our attention that there is an event occurring in Boston on Saturday, November 2, that will severely compromise our ability to conduct a SABR Boston Chapter meeting centered upon the subject of BASEBALL.

Therefore, the Boston Chapter is forced to postpone the Fall Meeting that was scheduled for Saturday November 2 at the Non Profit Center.

Apparently there will be a WICKED PISSAH BIG CELEBRATION throughout the City of Boston that has something important to do with BASEBALL and if UEHARA planning to attend the meeting, I will not complain ORTIZ you about wanting to go to the victory parade instead of the meeting — which we are postponing to a later date because the Red Sox did not warn us about winning the World Series and then scheduling the wicked big VICTORINO parade that conflicts with our meeting.

So, LESTER you have something else to do on Saturday, we advise you attend the parade and we will save the meeting for another time since we know better than to compete with the SOX when they pull off something like this.

— Joanne Hulbert

Call for Papers: 2014 The National Pastime

The 2014 SABR national convention will take place July 30-August 3, 2014, at the Royal Sonesta Hotel in Houston, Texas.

To coincide with the convention, the summer 2014 issue of The National Pastime will focus on Houston-area baseball. In particular, we will be focusing on 1962-present to avoid overlap with the special book on pre-Astros baseball that the Houston chapter is concurrently producing. We expect most of the articles will center on the Astros, but we are open to other topics that fit the time frame (Women’s baseball? Little league? Fan studies? College baseball? You tell us.) Articles may be historical, biographical, or analytical, but please avoid personal narrative.

This issue of The National Pastime will be edited by publications director Cecilia Tan. She will be taking queries and abstracts until November 15, 2013, and will make assignments no later than December 1. First drafts of articles will be due by March 1, 2014, and rewrites (if needed) will be due by April 15.

Queries should include 1-2 paragraphs of brief but detailed encapsulation of the article idea, as well as a description of why you are interested in it or qualified to research it. Be specific about the sources you plan to use and what of your research is original. If you can estimate the length of the finished article, that is good, too. Typical articles tend to run 2,000 to 5,000 words — the size of a midterm paper, not a masters thesis. The upper limit on papers for the TNP is around 6,500 words. 

To query, email to with the subject line “TNP Query:” and a key word or two on your subject. For example: “TNP Query: Bagwell/Biggio Comparison.”

Some possible subjects that could be included:

  • invention of Astroturf/uniqueness of the Astrodome
  • the April 15, 1968 marathon 24-inning game
  • 1963 all-rookie game
  • Colt Stadium’s contribution to the establishment of Sunday night baseball
  • the lone game in Astrodome history that was rained out
  • Leo Durocher’s over-the-hill misfit time as Houston’s manager;
  • analysis of the blockbuster trade of 1971
  • the so-called Astrodome Indian Burial Grounds Curse
  • Astros pitchers dying young (Don Wilson, Jim Umbricht, possibly Darryl Kile)
  • 1986 All Star Game
  • Astros postseason performance analysis
  • The Killer Bs

Remember that every article must include proper citation of sources and present a clear thesis, and to be published in a SABR journal your SABR membership must be current. For full writers guidelines, submit a query to and you will receive the full guidelines in reply.

For more information on the SABR 44 convention in Houston, visit

Students: Apply for a Yoseloff Scholarship to attend 2014 SABR Analytics Conference

With generous funding from The Anthony A. Yoseloff Foundation, Inc., SABR will award up to four scholarships to college students who wish to attend the 2014 SABR Analytics Conference on March 13-15, 2014, in Phoenix, Arizona. This scholarship will pay for registration, air transportation and lodging up to a total value of $1,250.

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

To apply, submit an essay of 750 words or less answering the following questions: “How does attending this conference help you in analytics and/or baseball research? Why would this conference be beneficial for you to attend?” Style guidelines are available on the application form.

Students must be currently enrolled in a high school, college undergraduate or graduate program, and be between 18 and 29 years of age at the time of the conference. Some form of age verification (photocopy of driver’s license, passport, etc.) must be attached to your application.

Submissions must include a brief letter of recommendation from a current high school/college teacher, guidance counselor or a school administrator. All applications must be postmarked or e-mailed to Jeff Schatzki at no later than December 31, 2013.

For full details on how to apply, click here.

4 new biographies published by the SABR BioProject

Four new biographies were posted as part of the SABR Baseball Biography Project, which brings us to a total of 2,576 published biographies. Here are the new bios:

All new biographies can be found here: /bioproj/recent

You can find the SABR BioProject at

1950s Boston Red Sox biographies now posted online: The 1950s Red Sox were teeming with huge stories. You might know about Ted Williams, of course, but consider his teammates: Harry Agganis, a legendary local athlete whose tragic death is remembered by millions in the region; or Jimmy Piersall, whose illness and breakdown led to a book and two movies; or Jackie Jensen, a famous collegiate football star who forged a great career with the Red Sox. The Red Sox are famous for failing to integrate until 1959, the last team to do so. The people mostly blamed for this oversight (Tom Yawkey, Joe Cronin, and Mike Higgins), as well as the man who finally broke the color line (Pumpsie Green), were all profiled in our 2012 book Red Sox Baseball in the Days of Ike and Elvis: The Red Sox of the 1950s, edited by Mark Armour and Bill Nowlin, with Maurice Bouchard and Len Levin. The SABR BioProject biographies from that book can now be read online at: /category/completed-book-projects/1950s-boston-red-sox. The e-book is available for free to all SABR members; SABR members also get 50% off the paperback version. Click here for details.

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 /bioproj/browse. 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 seeking stats stringers for 2014 season, the official web site of Major League Baseball, is seeking stats stringers to cover these clubs in 2014 and beyond:

  • Anaheim/Los Angeles
  • Chicago (both teams)
  • Cleveland
  • Colorado
  • Detroit
  • Miami
  • Oakland/San Francisco
  • Texas

Stats stringers are responsible for digitally scoring games from the MLB ballparks, which provides the data used in the live content applications on, including At-Bat, Gameday and MLB.TV, real-time highlights and text alerts, and by our business partners. This is a perfect part-time job for a responsible, computer-savvy person who happens to be a big baseball fan.

For more details on the responsibilities required and the desired qualifications, click here.

Those interested in applying should send a resume and cover letter, addressing the above-listed qualifications, to ONLY those who reply to this e-mail address will be considered, and due to volume, we may be unable to respond to all applicants.

Thanks and good luck! 

October 20 Board minutes posted

Minutes from the Board of Directors conference call on October 20, 2013, have now been posted on the SABR website.

You can view all past minutes of SABR Board meetings by going to the page below:


Or you can go to the Members’ Info page and click on “Org. files”, then “Board Minutes” to view the minutes.

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: /content/this-week-in-sabr-archives.

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.

Name Hometown     Name Hometown
Matt Adams Mundelein, IL     Sean Loutzenhiser Marlton, NJ
Richard Aubuchon Blue Springs, MO     Dave Ocorr Canandaigua, NY
Michael Bilotti Westerly, RI     Stan Phillips East Windsor, NJ
Jason Collette Orlando, FL     Michelle Princi Bethesda, MD
Adam Enkin Toronto, ON     Jennifer Ramos Merced, CA
Dan Gentile Cambridge, MA     James Richardson Belton, TX
Ron Gettinger Lynchburg, VA     Matt Rickman Tampa, FL
John Haynes Shreveport, LA     Thomas St. John St. Louis, MO
Wes Hemmings McKees Rocks, PA     Timothy Suchomel Johnson City, TN
Hyun-sung Kim Seoul, SK     Bob Wozny Bourbonnais, IL
Richard Kinne Somerville, MA        


Research committee newsletters

Here are the new SABR research committee newsletters published this week:

Find all SABR research committee newsletters at

Chapter meeting news

Here are the new chapter meeting recaps published 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, and sent out to all SABR members on Fridays. All previous editions of This Week in SABR can be found here: /content/this-week-in-sabr-archives. If you would like us to include an upcoming event, article or any other information in “This Week in SABR”, e-mail

Find exclusive Members’ Only resources and information here:

Did you know you can renew your membership at any time? 1- and 3-year SABR memberships are available by clicking “Renew” at Please also consider a donation to SABR to support baseball research at

Are you following us on Twitter or Facebook? Get SABR updates every day at @SABR or by searching “SABR” on Facebook.

Replying to this e-mail goes to an undeliverable address. If you would like to contact the SABR office, please visit: /about/contact-sabr

Originally published: November 1, 2013. Last Updated: April 3, 2020.