2018 SABR Day: Denver

Rocky Mountain Chapter Meeting Recap
January 27th, 2018, 11:00 a.m.
Blue Moon Restaurant and Brewery, Denver, Colorado


SABR's Rocky Mountain Chapter hosted its ninth annual SABR Day on Saturday, January 27, 2018, with 52 SABR members and friends in attendance. The traditional mass game of catch began at 11:10 a.m. with the call “Play Ball”! The weather was extremely cooperative providing a partly sunny but chilly morning at approximately 40 degrees. The bullpen warm-ups and games of catch were a little rusty, but the baseballs flew and mitts popped in short order!

The mass game of catch concluded at 11:30 a.m. and then all participants congregated into the Blue Moon Restaurant and Brewery for lunch. Everyone enjoyed some good food, good company and numerous conversations about the goings on in the baseball world.

After lunch concluded at approximately 1:15 pm, everyone walked into the Event Room for the formal presentations to begin. Chapter President Paul Parker provided welcome greetings to all guests and chapter members. He followed by providing general announcements which included information regarding the chapters 2018 event planning, scheduling, and chapter calendar for meetings, luncheons, game of the month, and banquet.

Parker then presented an announcement regarding the communication from the national SABR office on a potential “Name Change” to SABR. The change would be replacing “American” with “Advancement” in the SABR name, so the full name would now be called the “Society for the Advancement of Baseball Research.” At this point, Marks passed out the communication from the National SABR Board that also included talking points. Parker then opened it up to a limited time framed general discussion. Various Rocky Mountain SABR members and friends gave their opinion and vote on the name change. After time was up, Parker thanked everyone for their messages and opinions, and noted a follow-up communication would be provided to the National SABR Board once the votes were tallied.

Roger Kinney was our first SABR Day presenter and was introduced by Parker. Roger gave an outstanding presentation about the history of baseball at the University of Colorado-Boulder. He spoke of all his memories regarding the teams he played on during his time at CU in the mid-1950s. He also spoke about certain players and coaches, including certain memorable events that really spoke to the great tradition of the baseball program at CU. He then gave some additional history of certain players that went on to have stellar careers in professional baseball after they left the CU program. Roger then concluded his presentation by arguing for the return of a Division 1 baseball program at the University of Colorado. Roger then took questions from the audience.

Parker then introduced Manny Randhawa, Board member elect and project leader for the new Rocky Mountain SABR website, to formally launch the new website. Randhawa then formally launched the new website and provided an overview of the features of the new website. Randhawa then took questions from the audience regarding the new website.

Parker then introduced the final presenter, Dan Evans, current Major League Baseball Scout and Director of Pacific Rim Operations of the Toronto Blue Jays. Evans gave a stellar presentation on the current professional baseball culture of the Far East and Pacific Rim Countries, including providing a great slideshow showing numerous pictures and memorabilia the Pacific Countries on his travels within all the various towns and cities. He focused mostly on the current customs and traditions involving professional baseball in Japan and South Korea, with some insights into the current world of baseball in China that is gaining traction. Evans provided some fantastic recaps on how people in the Far East now view baseball as a part of their culture, including how various towns and cities sell out each and every game, including high school games. Evans also provided some great pictures on friends and acquaintances he would connect with during his professional assignments, including the Little League champions from the country of Japan.

The speakers were praised for their outstanding presentations and answers to questions by all members and guests. Chapter members provided a great round of applause for all speakers and presenters which was well deserved.

Everyone enjoyed a great SABR Day in the Mile High City of the Rocky Mountains!

Click here to view a SABR Day photo gallery, courtesy of Caitlin Rice.

— Alex Marks