Six enthusiastic and dedicated chapter members met on Thursday, May 16, to catch up on recent umpire (mis)rulings and judgment calls, the change in Astros leadership, the resiliency of Rick Ankiel and an update on SABR 44, which will be co-hosted by the Larry Dierker Chapter and our chapter in summer 2014 in Houston.
I thought that the Reid Ryan hiring as the new Astros president was a good move, though Monte Cely suggested I may be overly optimistic about what impact the hiring will have. Indeed, Jan Larson wondered what, exactly, does a team president do? The hope is that the team president will address and prevent some of the very bad instances of public relations by the Astros front office in recent months. Perhaps the first order of business is taking care of the ongoing diaster involving getting the Astros on cable television in Houston and around Texas.
I gave an update on the national SABR conference. I attended a meeting in Houston earlier this week with Marc Appleman, SABR executive director and Deb Jayne, SABR membership and events manager, along with the leadership in the Dierker Chapter. Appleman and Jayne toured several hotels in downtown Houston as potential sites for the convention. We won’t have a date for the convention until late August after the 2014 MLB schedule is known. The plan is to pick a weekend in which the Astros are in town. Organizers also hope to include an outing to see the independent-league Sugar Land Skeeters.
Dierker and Hornsby Chapter members will be needed as volunteers, mostly as room monitors for research presentations throughout the conference. If you are interested in serving as a volunteer, please speak to me.
The next chapter meeting will be on Thursday, June 13.