This morning we awake to big news for local baseball fans. Yesterday, June 29th, we learned that SABR (The Society for American Baseball Research) had announced at its 2012 National Convention in Minneapolis that the same 2014 event had been awarded to our bid from Houston to hold the big gathering in the Bayou City. Now it’s a done deal. Our Houston Larry Dierker Chapter of SABR will host the convention with some considerable help from our good neighboring Austin friends of the Rogers Hornsby Chapter.
So, what is SABR, anyway, you may be wondering?
And the answer is many things that are all woven together by a deep common love for baseball, and everything else that entails, from the lyrical narrative story of its history to its user-friendly yield of variously measurable statistics. From the long-term study of how baseball actually formed as our national pastime to the thoughts and theories of saber-metric statisticians like Bill James, from history to art, from fiction to fact, and from literature and poetry to physics and math, SABR members cover the waterfront of perspective on their mutually shared love of the game.
Asking about the size and shape of SABR is a little like the old proverb of “how does an elephant look to a blind man?” The answer is the same. It all depends upon which part of the elephant the blind man grabs.
A Very Brief History. On August 10, 1971, 16 baseball-dedicated individuals met at the National Baseball Hall of Fame Library in dear old Cooperstown, New York, to form the Society for American Baseball Research. The membership has grown over the years because of the varied attraction we summarily bounded through earlier. How we each fell in love with the game is almost in itself a never-ending tale of childhood sandlots and all those early joys and disappointments. With the death of the childhood sandlot in this more structured and protective world, of course, we now have to wonder if today’s generations will have the same opportunity to fall in love with the game as er once did.
in the meanwhile, the beat of SABR’s dedication to the game goes on – and all that scope of interest and investment lands in Houston only two years from now.
There will be an array of papers and presentations on the history and science of baseball, and plenty of topical talks and panel discussions on contemporary issues that now affect the future of the game. So, if you are not a SABR member and would like more information on all the benefits it offers to members for a very low annual fee, please check out the SABR national website.
For information about our local Larry Dierker Chapter and how you may get involved with one of the most active and personally rewarding chapters in the nation, please go to our local website.
Finally, I really cannot express enough how beautifully this news fits in with our local chapter plans to publish “Houston Baseball, The Early Years, 1881-1961,” the in-depth study of Houston’s baseball history prior to the coming of the big league game in 1962. With SABR coming here, fellow book team members, we will not have to first take our Houston story to the world. – The world of SABR is coming to hear it in person from us. – All the more reason for all of us making our production the finest of its kind that’s ever sailed down history pike.
Visualize it, team. It is the summer of 2014. The book is here and available to SABR Convention attendees. And we, the members of our hang-tough research team, are here to both speak about our subject area experiences and convene together for discussions and Q&A sessions on what we have learned about a recorded history of the game that reaches all the way back to 1861 in Houston.
Bring it on, SABR. It’s time that the world at large finally learned that baseball did not begin in Houston, or Texas, with the coming of the 2005 World Series, nor as a late-srriving little brother to football. Baseball ruled Houston at least twenty prior to the first appearance of that oblong-shaped pigskin ball.
An early welcome to SABR is in order. – We shall be looking forward to seeing all of you in Houston in 2014.
Tags: SABR TO HOUSTON IN 2014