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March 2014 Meeting Recap
Written by Monte Cely   
Thursday, 20 March 2014 21:35

 A small but enthusiastic group of eight SABR members met at Iron Works BBQ in downtown Austin for the Hornsby Chapter March meeting.  The group is anxiously awaiting the start of the 2014 season, and topics of discussion included:  the status of replay and appeals; opening day in Australia; betting lines on the upcoming season (the Dodgers are favored to take it all); how free agent acquisitions are doing with their new teams; and much more.

Dan Walsh presented the quiz, entitled Alphabetic Home Run Leaders.  Tom Thayer and Eric Robinson tied for the lead with 11 correct answers out of a possible 26, with Tom taking the tie-breaker for the valuable first prize.  Try your hand at the quiz, it's located here.

Two reminders:

The Hornsby Chapter Predictatron ballots are due to Jim Baker by midnight on Sunday, March 30.  Don't miss out on the chance to participate in this season-long contest.

The Round Rock Express will host the Rangers' AA affiliate, the Frisco RoughRiders, in an exhibition game featuring Texas Rangers' prospects.  Game time is 7:05pm on Tuesday April 1 at Dell Diamond.  Tickets are $5.  For those interested in attending, we'll meet in section 116 (behind the third base dugout) to enjoy the pre-season action.

Next meeting -- will be Thursday April 17 at 6pm back at Iron Works in downtown Austin. 

Last Updated on Thursday, 20 March 2014 21:45
 
Recap of February Meeting
Written by Monte Cely   
Sunday, 23 February 2014 09:59

Seventeen (17) members, guests, and family converged on Bill and Evelyn Gilbert's house in Lakeway for the February 2014 meeting of the Rogers Hornsby chapter.

With spring training underway, the baseball discussions were far-ranging.  Topics included:  recent free agent and international signings, the advent of more instant replay and the no-collisions-at-home effort, status of the Astros and Rangers squads, Monte Cely's recent trip to Venezuela for the 56th Caribbean Series, and Jan Larson's upcoming trip to Australia for the MLB "opening day" in Sydney.

Dan Walsh won the quiz, on Venezuelan baseball, the prize being a Venezuelan national team ballcap and a "lucky" two bolivares banknote (worth three cents on the black market).  See how you do on the quiz, it's here

A big "thank you" to the Gilberts for hosting this event and for all the wonderful food and drink. 

Our next chapter meeting will be Thursday March 20, 6pm, back at Iron Works in downtown Austin.  More details will be forthcoming.

 

Last Updated on Sunday, 23 February 2014 10:07
 
SABR Day Lunch Meeting
Written by Jan Larson   
Saturday, 25 January 2014 18:10

Ten members and guests gathered for Saturday lunch at the Macaroni Grill in the Arboretum in Austin to discuss baseball and to celebrate SABR Day.  Topics discussed included the recent signing of Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka by the Yankees, the signing of free agent Robinson Cano by the Mariners, Monte Cely's upcoming trip to Venezuela for the Caribbean Series and miscellaneous other off-season baseball topics.  The date and location of the February monthly meeting has not yet been determined.  More information will be forthcoming in the near future.

 
Eddie Robinson and Matt Kata highlight winter meeting
Written by Gilbert Martinez   
Tuesday, 14 January 2014 17:47

 

(Pictured above: Eddie Robinson, right, and C. Paul Rogers III. This and all photos on this page by Ryan Pollack)

 

Two former Major League Baseball players with a combined nine decades of professional baseball experience were the headliners for another great day of baseball talk at the 8th Annual Winter Meeting of the Rogers Hornsby Chapter on Jan. 11, 2014.

 

In addition, 55 members and guests -- our largest winter meeting attendance ever -- got a preview of the upcoming national SABR conference in Houston from Bob Dorrill, chair of the Larry Dierker Chapter, which is hosting the conference July 30 to Aug. 3.

 

Eddie Robinson recounted his time in baseball, including as a member of the 1948 World Series Champion Cleveland Indians, and later as a scout and general manager. He was also in the Houston Colt .45s front office as head of player development when the team signed future Hall of Famer Joe Morgan. Robinson signed copies of his book, "Lucky Me: My Sixty-Five Years in Baseball," and was joined by co-author C. Paul Rogers III, professor of law and former dean of Southern Methodist University School of Law. Rogers is also the chair of SABR's Hall-Ruggles Chapter in Dallas-Fort Worth.

 

Robinson shared many interesting stories about his baseball experiences, including the time relatively early in his career when Rogers Hornsby advised him on hitting. Pondering whether he should try to guess what pitchers were about to throw, Hornsby told him no -- that he should hit what he sees.That, coupled with other advice about working the count, helped him improve as a hitter, he said.

 

Former MLB player Matt Kata (pictured on right) also shared stories about his time playing for Vanderbilt and later as one of the "Baby Backs," the infusion of young players on the 2003 Arizona Diamondbacks, which made a run for the playoffs when the team suffered a number of injuries. He also talked about the pressure of playing second base in Randy Johnson's perfect game against the Atlanta Braves in 2004.

 

Kata spent 14 years in professional baseball, including time with the Phillies, Pirates, Astros and Rangers in addition to the Diamondbacks and with the Triple-A Round Rock Express. Today, he is the manager for baseball outreach for the Express, helping with the team's community outreach and working with Ryan-Sanders Sports Turf Services, which recently replaced the turf at Texas State's baseball field.

Mike Capps, director of broadcasting and the voice of the Round Rock Express (pictured below), returned to give us a preview of the 2014 Express and Texas Rangers. He expressed hope that the Rangers would pursue Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka. And he warmed the hearts of Astros fans in the audience when he said he thought the Astros would avoid another 100-loss season.

 


 Jan Larson (pictured below on left) recounted details of his trip to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum in Cooperstown last summer. In the afternoon, Chuck Kaufman (pictured below on right) discussed his recent trip to Cuba, which included watching Cuban baseball games. Jim Baker opened the meeting by sharing details of his first Major League Baseball game and asked members of the audience to share theirs.

  

We missed having Norman Macht with us at this winter meeting. Macht is the author of the definitive biography of Connie Mack; the third and final volume is set for publication soon. For a number of years, he has opened our meetings with creative trivia questions. Having recently relocated to California, Norman sent these icebreakers: 1.Take a Hall of Fame pitcher, add an "S" to his name and get a Hall of Fame outfielder who was born in Shiner, died at 30 and is buried in San Antonio; and 2) Take a Hall of Fame outfielder, remove the "S" from his name and get a first baseman who batted .389 with two home runs for the Cincinnati Reds in the 1970 World Series (Scroll to the bottom to check your answers).

 

Also, special thanks to all of our presenters. Monte Cely, who helps run the Hornsby Chapter, deserves special thanks and recognition for assembling the meeting agenda and lining up another great panel of presenters.

 

 Much thanks for these fantastic photos by Ryan Pollack, who volunteered his time to photograph the meeting. Here's his website: www.ryanpollack.com

 

Below are more photos from a great day of baseball talk.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Answers to Norman Macht's icebreakers: 1. Cy Young/Ross Youngs; 2.Willie Mays/Lee May)

 

 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 14 January 2014 22:11
 
2014 Annual Winter Meeting
Written by Monte Cely   
Saturday, 30 November 2013 14:57
Society for American Baseball Research
ROGERS HORNSBY CHAPTER
Eighth Annual WINTER MEETING
 
at TEXAS STATE UNIVERSITY
OLD MAIN BUILDING, ROOM 320
San Marcos, Texas
 
SATURDAY, JANUARY 11, 2014
9:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
 
 
THE LINEUP (in alphabetical order):
 
JIM BAKER - will handle warm-up duties.
 
MIKE CAPPS - Director of Broadcasting for the Round Rock Express - AAA affiliate of the Texas Rangers.  Mike will preview the 2014 Express and Rangers' seasons.
 
BOB DORRILL - will update us on the 2014 SABR National Convention to be held in Houston
 
MATT KATA - Manager-Baseball Outreach for the Round Rock Express.  Matt will tell us about his experiences as a professional baseball player.
 
CHUCK KAUFMAN - will tell us about his trip to Cuba and their baseball, socialism-style.
 
JAN LARSON - will tell us what he did on his summer vacation.
 
EDDIE ROBINSON and PAUL ROGERS will discuss Eddie's career as a major league player, coach, GM and scout and their recent collaboration on the book Lucky Me, My 65 Years in Baseball.
Note -- copies of this book will be available for purchase.
 
 
We'll also have our usual features:
 
LUNCH - register upon arrival and sign up for your lunch choices; it'll be delivered -- all for a nominal charge.  NOTES - we must have your lunch order by 10am in order to get delivery by noontime; we can only accept cash.
 
BOOK EXCHANGE – members are encouraged to bring a baseball book to exchange.
 
MEMORABILIA DISPLAY – there is scheduled time after lunch for memorabilia owners to describe & discuss.
 
DRESS CODE - wearing your favorite team's cap, jersey, or sportswear is always encouraged.
 

Contact any member of the organizing committee if you have any questions or need more info:

Gilbert Martinez : gmartinez46@austin.rr.com

Monte Cely : cely@swbell.net

Jan Larson : jan.a.larson@gmail.com

COME EARLY, STAY LATE, HAVE FUN ! 

The meeting will be on the third floor in the Old Main building on the Texas State University campus. Look for the elevator on the first floor, or use the stairs.

Here's a photo of Old Main:

 
 
Directions to Texas State University-San Marcos
 
If you're traveling north from San Antonio, take I-35 and take Exit 206, Aquarena Springs Drive.
 
If you're traveling south from Austin, take I-35 and take Exit 206, Aquarena Springs Drive.
 
Travel west on Aquarena Springs Drive, which turns into University Drive. After crossing the San Marcos River, you will come to a traffic light. Turn right onto Sessom Drive. Just before the first light, turn left on State Street and go up a steep road toward Old Main. Go through a gate (the gate should be up) and continue up the hill. At the top of the hill, make a sharp left turn and drive up to Old Main. Look for parking on this road that winds around the side and back of Old Main.
 
You can find additional parking at the Pleasant Street Garage, located at the corner of N. LBJ and Pleasant Street. To reach this garage, after you pass through the gate, continue up the hill, then down the hill to the stop sign on Pleasant Street. Turn left; the entrance to the parking garage will be on your left.
 
You do not need a parking pass to park on campus – however, do not park in spaces not marked as parking spaces or in handicapped parking (unless you have the appropriate tag displayed).
 
The meeting room is on the third floor in Room 320. There is an elevator on the first floor, or you can take the stairs.
 
Please note:  The exterior of Old Main is being refurbished and there may still be scaffolding around the outside of the building.  Exercise caution as you enter.  The ongoing construction should not effect the interior of the building.
 
If you get lost or need help, call Gilbert Martinez (cell phone: 512-963-1263).
 
Use this link to see a Googe map showing the Texas State campus in relation to I-35:
 
Use this link to see a closer view of Old Main and the campus:  http://tiny.cc/VJ8BH

 

 
 
 
Last Updated on Thursday, 19 December 2013 08:48
 
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