Saturday, January 27, 2018

Meeting of the Casey Stengel Chapter of SABR at NYPL Today

Every year on the last Saturday of January the local chapters of SABR hold a meeting.  This is the fourth time that I have attended this meeting at the New York Public Library.  Previously, it was held at the Mid-Manhattan Library, but since it is being renovated it was moved to the Celeste Auditorium of the Stephen Schwartzman Building (Central Research).  This was the second time in less than a week that I returned to my employer from 1983-1990.

Moe Resner who recently wrote a book about the Chicago Cubs told the story of how he threw out the first pitch at Wrigley Field. I just found the Youtube video of it.

Virginia Bartow, a librarian at NYPL, gave a brief talk on the baseball resources in the library and how to find them.  The digital resources can be accessed remotely, while one must come to the library to read the print books.  She also discussed some of the rare materials such as the Spalding Baseball Collection.  She started at NYPL in 1988 when I was there.  Her name was familiar, but I was not acquainted with her.

Radio host and author Ed Randall moderated a panel discussion on the state of the game.  the panelists were:

  • Phil Cuzzi - Major League umpire since 1991
  • Tom Giordano - a 92-year young gentleman considered a legendary baseball scout
  • Art Shamsky - from the 1969 World Champion New York Mets.  Karen, Lee and I met him at Beatlefest 2014 where we took a picture of him.
I'll just mention a few of the comments made.
  • The length of games is increasing because the batters constantly get out of the box.  Replay has also increased the time of games.
  • Since the implementation of replay, there have been less vehement arguments with umpires
  • Art Shamsky is writing a book for the 50th anniversary of the 1969 Mets
Tyler Kepner, a baseball writer for the New York Times, gave his biography stating that he is from Philadelphia and was a sportswriter in several cities before landing at the Times.  He has been the beat writer for the Mets and Yankees and is well-respected.  He answered many questions from the audience.

Baseball historian Jon Springer spoke about Edward Sylvester Nolan who played for the 1884 Wilmington Quicksteps.  He is writing a book about that team titled Once Upon a Team.

Diane Firstman completed the day by discussing the relationships among walks, strikeouts, and home runs and how the statistics have changed over the years.

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