This Week in SABR: March 16, 2018

Welcome to "This Week in SABR!" Click here to view this week's newsletter on the web. Here's what we've been up to as of March 16, 2018:


Check out highlights and photos from the 2018 SABR Analytics Conference

Couldn't make it to Arizona for the SABR Analytics Conference? Visit SABR.org/analytics for full coverage of this exciting event that brought together the top minds in the baseball analytics community in 2018. You'll feel like you were wandering through the Hyatt Regency Phoenix with stories and multimedia clips from the great panel discussions and research presentations on our schedule, photo galleries, and much more.

Once again, we brought 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.

Click on a link below for multimedia highlights:

Friday, March 9

Saturday, March 10

Sunday, March 11

Visit SABR.org/analytics for more coverage of the 2018 SABR Analytics Conference.


Pete Palmer honored with 2018 SABR Analytics Conference Lifetime Achievement Award

Sabermetric pioneer Pete Palmer was honored with the second SABR Analytics Conference Lifetime Achievement Award on Saturday, March 10 in Phoenix, Arizona.

John Thorn, Major League Baseball's Official Historian and a collaborator with Palmer on many sports books, presented him with his award during the seventh annual SABR Analytics Conference.

"The work itself is a reward, but it's always nice to be recognized by your peers," Palmer said.

A mathematician and analyst; an encyclopedist and author; a historical sleuth and statistical innovator; a researchers’ invaluable guide and friendly collaborator, Pete Palmer has been at the forefront of the new approaches to how we think about the game. He has devised new stats — On Base Plus Slugging, Linear Weights, and more — and retraced the steps of statisticians of yore to correct their tabulations. His contributions to the game have been as particular as correcting Ty Cobb’s hit total and as grand as restating and evaluating all the game’s historical records through the prism of modern statistical measures. He was the first to recognize the mathematical relationship between runs and wins, and the one most responsible for the introduction of On Base Percentage into common parlance.

Palmer and Thorn's The Hidden Game of Baseball, originally published in 1984, remains a touchstone for sabermetric thought. Palmer’s encyclopedic work commenced in the 1970s when he edited the venerable Turkin-Thompson Official Encyclopedia of Baseball, originally issued in 1951. From 1989 through 2001, he and Thorn published seven editions of the groundbreaking encyclopedia Total Baseball. Beginning in 2004 he and Gary Gillette combined to issue The Baseball Encyclopedia, endorsed in subsequent years by ESPN.

Palmer was the recipient of SABR's Bob Davids Award in 2004 and part of the inaugural class for the Henry Chadwick Award in 2010.

For more information on the 2018 SABR Analytics Conference, or to register, visit SABR.org/analytics.

Related links:


Baccellieri, Springer, Brisbee win 2018 SABR Analytics Conference Research Awards

Emma Baccellieri, Stephanie Springer, and Grant Brisbee were announced as the winners of 2018 SABR Analytics Conference Research Awards on Sunday, March 11 at the seventh annual SABR Analytics Conference in Phoenix, Arizona.

Baccellieri was voted as the winner of the Contemporary Baseball Commentary Award for her article “Major League Baseball's Statcast Can Break Sabermetrics,” which was published by Deadspin on December 18, 2017. Baccellieri writes for Deadspin, Baseball Prospectus, and other outlets. Before focusing on sports, she held reporting internships with Open Secrets, McClatchy's Washington, D.C. bureau, and the Charlotte Observer. She graduated from Duke University in 2016.

Springer (pictured at right) was voted as the winner of the Contemporary Baseball Analysis Award for her article “Get a Grip,” which was published by The Hardball Times on October 25, 2017. Springer is a medicinal chemist with more than a decade years of experience in the biotech and pharmaceutical industry. Since 2010, she has worked as a patent examiner with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. She holds degrees from the University of Maryland and Boston College.

Brisbee was voted as the winner of the Historical Baseball Analysis/Commentary Award for his article “Why Baseball Games Are So Damned Long,” which was published by SB Nation on March 28, 2017. Brisbee is the senior baseball writer for SB Nation. Since 2005, he also has been the lead writer for McCovey Chronicles, a San Francisco Giants-themed website on the SB Nation network. His work has appeared on MLB Network, Deadspin, and Business Insider. He is a graduate of San Jose State University. This is Brisbee's second SABR Analytics Conference Research Award, having won the Contemporary Commentary award in 2015.

The SABR Analytics Conference Research Awards recognize baseball researchers who have completed the best work of original analysis or commentary during the preceding calendar year.

Click here to read more at SABR.org.


2018 Diamond Dollars Case Competition winners announced

The 2018 Diamond Dollars Case Competition winners were announced Friday, March 9 during the SABR Analytics Conference at the Hyatt Regency Phoenix in Phoenix, Arizona.

The winning teams selected were from Washington University in St. Louis, Maggie L. Walker Governor's School, the University of Southern California, and Indiana University.

The Washington University team — which was picked to deliver an encore presentation in front of the full SABR Analytics Conference on Saturday — included Jarod Bacon, Isaiah Berg, Tyler Brandt, Rohan Gupta, and Bailey Winston.

In this year's case, students were asked to evaluate the relationship between launch angle and exit velocity, using data from MLB Statcast, BaseballSavant.com, and other publicly available tools, and then determine the optimal launch angle for four major-league hitters.

More than 70 alumni from the 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017 Diamond Dollars Case Competitions have secured internships or permanent positions within Major League Baseball.

Visit SABR.org/analytics/case to learn more.


Leeke, Steinberg, Young win 2018 SABR Baseball Research Awards

The 2018 SABR Baseball Research Awards, which honor outstanding research projects completed during the preceding calendar year that have significantly expanded our knowledge or understanding of baseball, have been awarded to

  • Jim Leeke, From the Dugouts to the Trenches: Baseball During The Great War, published by Bison Press
  • Steve Steinberg, Urban Shocker: Silent Hero of Baseball's Golden Age, published by University of Nebraska Press
  • William A. Young, J.L. Wilkinson and the Kansas City Monarchs: Trailblazers in Black Baseball, published by McFarland & Co.

The authors will receive their awards at the SABR 48 national convention, June 20-24, 2018, in Pittsburgh.

Leeke, a former news journalist and US Navy veteran, is also the author of Nine Innings for the King: The Day Wartime London Stopped for Baseball, July 4, 1918 and Ballplayers in the Great War: Newspaper Accounts of Major Leaguers in World War I Military Service.

Steinberg is a baseball historian and co-author with Lyle Spatz of 1921: The Yankees, the Giants, and the Battle for Baseball Supremacy in New York, which won SABR's Seymour Medal in 2011. Steinberg is a two-time winner of the SABR Baseball Research Award, having been honored with co-author Spatz in 2016 for The Colonel and Hug: The Partnership That Transformed the New York Yankees

Young is an emeritus professor of religious studies at Westminster College in Fulton, Missouri, and the author of John Tortes "Chief" Meyers: A Baseball Biography and several books on world religions.

The SABR Baseball Research Award is designed to honor projects that do not fit the criteria for the Seymour Medal or the McFarland-SABR Baseball Research Award.

The selection committee consists of: Bill Felber (chair), Tara Krieger, and Larry Levine.

To see a complete list of SABR Baseball Research Award winners, click here.


SABR Digital Library: From Spring Training to Screen Test: Baseball Players Turned Actors

Add this new book on baseball's "matinee stars" from the SABR Digital Library to your collection:

From Spring Training to Screen Test: Baseball Players Turned Actors
Edited by Rob Edelman and Bill Nowlin 
Associate Editors: Greg Erion, Len Levin, Emmet R. Nowlin
ISBN (paperback): 978-1-943816-71-2, $19.95
ISBN (e-book): 978-1-943816-70-5, $9.99
410 pages, 8.5" x 11"

Click here for a full description of this book at SABR.org.

SABR members, get this e-book for FREE!

Having trouble downloading our e-books? To view PDF files on your computer, click here to download the free Adobe Reader software. Having trouble downloading e-books to your Kindle, Nook, Sony Reader or iPad? Click here for additional help.

SABR members will get discounted rates for all Digital Library publications, including all e-book editions for free. Visit SABR.org/ebooks for a full list of titles.


SABR 48: Early registration now open for 2018 national convention in Pittsburgh

We hope you'll join us for what promises to be a spectacular SABR 48 convention on June 20-24, 2018, at the Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 

Early registration is now available at SABR.org/convention; all baseball fans are welcome to attend. Click here for more information on SABR 48 registration rates, all-inclusive packages, and optional sessions. Or click here to register for SABR 48.

The Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh is conveniently located within walking distance from PNC Park and a light rail station, many downtown cultural amenities, and right across the street from the picturesque 36-acre Point State Park where the three rivers converge.

Click on a link below for more information about SABR 48.

  • Registration: We're again offering a special all-inclusive rate for the annual SABR convention. For $319, a savings of $30 off the regular rate, SABR members can get:
    — Full registration to SABR 48 in Pittsburgh (early-bird: $249; regular rate: $279)
    — 1 ticket in the Corner Box (LF) section to the Pirates vs. Diamondbacks game on Friday, June 22 — includes special "A Day at the Ballpark" pregame session at PNC Park ($40 value)
    — 1 ticket to the Awards Luncheon on Friday, June 22 ($60 value)
    Non-members can pay $394 for the all-inclusive rate. The deadline to register with the all-inclusive rate is Friday, May 18, 2018. Click here for complete information on SABR 48 registration rates, all-inclusive packages, and optional sessions. Or click here to register for SABR 48!
  • Hotel: The special SABR group rate at the Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh of $149/night (plus tax) is only available to registered convention attendees for the nights of Wednesday, June 20 through Saturday, June 23. After you register for the SABR 48 convention, you will receive an e-mail confirmation with details on how to book your hotel room at the SABR group rate. There are a limited number of rooms in our group block, so be sure to register for SABR 48 early! The Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh is located at 600 Commonwealth Place, Pittsburgh, PA 15222.
  • Awards Luncheon: SABR will host a special Awards Luncheon on Friday, June 22 at the Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh. The Awards Luncheon, which includes a full meal, will feature the announcement of SABR's annual awards — including the Bob Davids Award, our highest honor. One ticket to the Awards Luncheon is included in the all-inclusive package or guest tickets are available for $60 when you register for SABR 48.
  • A Day at the Ballpark: For the third year in a row and fourth time in five years, SABR will present “A Day at the Ballpark” before the Pittsburgh Pirates game against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Friday, June 22 at PNC Park. Special thanks to the Pirates for this great opportunity and for offering us a large block of tickets in the Corner Box (LF) section at an affordable price of $40 for SABR members ($45 for non-members). Purchase of SABR 48 conference registration AND a game ticket will be required to attend this special session. Guests and spouses can get in the ballpark early with purchase of a special SABR 48 Ballpark Session pass ($25) and a Pirates game ticket. Click here for more details.
  • Roberto Clemente Museum tours: The Roberto Clemente Museum in Pittsburgh has a special offer for SABR 48 attendees: The museum will host four tours (maximum of 20 people per tour) at $20 per person on Wednesday, June 20. Space is extremely limited, and reservations will only be made on a first-come, first-serve basis. Please call the museum at (412) 621-1268, Ext. 2, to reserve your space. No reservations can be made online; payment is due on-site when you arrive for the tour. Tours last about 1.5 hours and the start times on Wednesday, June 20 are as follows (subject to availability): 10:00 a.m., 12:15 p.m., 2:30 p.m., and 5:00 p.m. Click here for more details.
  • Research presentations: SABR invites all members to present their research findings to their colleagues attending SABR 48. The deadline to submit your abstract was Sunday, February 25, 2018. Click here for complete details and application form.
  • Yoseloff Scholarship: Students, click here to learn more about a Yoseloff Scholarship to attend SABR 48 in Pittsburgh. The deadline to apply is Friday, March 30, 2018.

All SABR 48 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 Pittsburgh area. All SABR members, whether you attend the convention or not, will receive the e-book edition of The National Pastime in their inboxes later this summer.

Stay tuned for more featured speakers and the complete schedule to be announced in the coming months. Visit SABR.org/convention to learn more.

We hope to see you this summer in Pittsburgh!


Students, two weeks left to apply for a Yoseloff Scholarship to attend SABR 48 in Pittsburgh

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 48 on June 20-24, 2018, in Pittsburgh. 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.

All applications must be postmarked or e-mailed to Jeff Schatzki at jschatzki@sabr.org no later than FRIDAY, MARCH 30, 2018.

Click here for complete details and criteria.


6 new SABR biographies published

Six new biographies were posted this week as part of the SABR Baseball Biography Project, which brings us to a total of 4,456 published biographies. Here are the new bios published this week:

All new biographies can be found here: SABR.org/bioproj/recent


Biographies from SABR's No-Hitters book now posted online

In SABR's No-Hitters, edited by Bill Nowlin and published in 2017, we focused on pitchers who threw no-hitters and the no-hitters they threw. Naturally, we couldn’t present biographies of everyone who ever threw a no-hitter nor could we present Games Project accounts of all of them. From around 300 no-hitters thrown in the majors (out of over 213,000 games), we have selected 59 no-hitters to include, along with the biographies of the men who threw them.

All of the biographies — from Hall of Famers such as Bob Feller, Sandy Koufax, and Randy Johnson to more obscure pitchers such as Larry Corcoran, Charlie Robertson, and Dallas Braden — that appeared in No-Hitters can now be read online at the SABR BioProject.

More game summaries from the No-Hitters book will be posted at the SABR Games Project soon.

You can also download the No-Hitters e-book for free or purchase the paperback edition at 50% off by clicking here.


8 new stories published by the SABR Games Project

Eight new game stories were posted this week as part of the SABR Games Project. Here are the new game stories:

New Games Project stories can be found at SABR.org/gamesproject/recent. Find all published Games Project articles at SABR.org/GamesProject.

If you have any questions about the Games Project, please contact Mike Huber. To request an assignment, please contact Steven C. Weiner. After the article has been completed in accordance with our Authors' Guidelines, please submit it to Len Levin, who will initiate the editing process and get your story started toward publication.

  • Get involved: Have memories of a game you attended? Or a game you watched that caught your interest? Write about it! Writing for the Games Project is an easy way to get involved as a SABR member. Find out how by reading the Games Project FAQs section or checking out the Authors' Guidelines. We have editors and fact checkers who are willing to help you write your first article.
  • Read stories from Tiger Stadium greatest games book: In SABR's Tigers by the Tale: Great Games at Michigan and Trumbull, edited by Scott Ferkovich and published in 2016, we told the stories of memorable moments at one of baseball's most famous corners: Detroit's Tiger Stadium. All of the stories that appeared in this book are now available to be read online at the SABR Games Project by clicking here.
  • Make a donation in memory of Greg Erion: On December 29, 2017, SABR member Greg Erion, 70, who had taken on the brunt of necessary reorganization of the SABR Games Project, died of cancer diagnosed just a few weeks earlier. Despite treatments, Greg worked tirelessly to assure a smooth transition for everyone involved with the Games Project. Some members closely involved with the Games Project have already made donations to SABR honoring Greg’s memory as a friend and colleague. We ask that others who knew and worked with Greg consider doing the same to honor his leadership, sense of easy cooperation, and tireless work for the advancement of an important SABR initiative. Not only will a donation in Greg’s name honor him, but it will advance SABR’s continuing work on all fronts and serve the collaborative spirit of the organization. You can give a memorial tribute by visiting SABR.org/donate and adding Greg Erion's name in the “Tribute Information” section when you make your contribution.

Help contribute to SABR Baseball Cards Committee encyclopedia project

In addition to all of the fun we have talking about or trading baseball cards, I thought it would also be fun to leave a more permanent mark upon this world, to organize all of the great work we have been doing.

Since we are a SABR Research Committee, I asked Jacob Pomrenke — SABR’s Director of Editorial Content — how we could best have and use permanent web space that is more easily found, organized, and updated. He urged me to use the SABR/Baseball-Reference Encyclopedia, otherwise known as the B-R Bullpen, for this purpose. It is a wiki, which is perfect for us in my view.

So I wrote up a very simple skeleton. (There was some baseball card material already there, which we will build on or around.)

Click here to view the Baseball Cards category page at the SABR/Baseball-Reference Encyclopedia.

Besides the front page, I already wrote up several subset pages (All-Star cards, Season Highlights, Historical Highlights, and Group Cards), and several place holders. I especially encourage any interested committee member to help, but it is a public wiki which anyone can update. My thought is that this would grow organically based on whatever it is people want to see here. Do you want to add a list of Police Sets? Let’s add it. A list of cards with people doing whimsical things (carrying snake, etc.)? Let’s add it. Cards of players signing autographs? Cards that show the wrong player? All ideas are welcome.

Click here to learn more about this project at the SABR Baseball Cards blog.

— Mark Armour


Listen to Behind the Numbers: Baseball SABR Style on SiriusXM this Sunday

Behind the Numbers: Baseball SABR Style on SiriusXM, a radio show hosted by SABR President Vince Gennaro, is back for the Hot Stove League offseason at a new time: 4:00-5:00 p.m. ET on Sundays, on MLB Network Radio.

This week's show will include highlights from the recent SABR Analytics Conference in Phoenix.

You can listen to archives of recent episodes on-demand on the SiriusXM Internet Radio App, and you can watch video highlights of Behind the Numbers: Baseball SABR Style on SiriusXM on MLB.com. Click here to watch more video highlights of Baseball SABR Style from MLB.com.

Behind the Numbers: Baseball SABR Style on SiriusXM focuses on examining and interpreting the statistical analysis that plays a critical role in baseball today. It airs 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.


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

For more information, click 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 members.sabr.org and the Membership 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 (SABR.org/directory).

Name Hometown     Name Hometown
Drew Bradley Indianapolis, IN     Troy Mulholland Denver, CO
Fred Ferris Newtown, CT     Antonio Rodriguez New York, NY
Michael Herman Baltimore, MD     Richard Smeltzer York, PA
Stacy Kaneshiro Ewa Beach, HI     Fred Soland Richmond, TX
Don Lord Enfield, CT     Joel Stewart Providence, RI
Andrew Meyer West Chester, PA     Mark Zorger Forest Hills, NY

 


Research Committee news

Here are the new research committee updates this week:

Find all SABR research committee newsletters at SABR.org/research.


Regional Chapter news

Here are the new regional chapter updates this week:

  • Best Practices handbook: Chapter leaders, you can download the updated Chapter Leaders Best Practices Handbook on the Admin Tools page at admin.sabr.org. The handbook offers suggestions and guidelines for meetings, speakers, revitalizing a chapter, and getting publicity for SABR and chapter events.

Visit SABR.org/chapters for more information on SABR regional chapters.


SABR Events Calendar

Here is a list of upcoming events on the SABR calendar:

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 SABR.org/events.


Around the Web

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

Read these articles and more at SABR.org/latest.


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 jpomrenke@sabr.org.

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This page was last updated March 16, 2018 at 1:41 pm MST.