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The Newsletter of the Halsey Hall Chapter
Society for American Baseball Research (SABR)

November 2016

Stew Thornley

Record Turnout for Fall Chapter Meeting
Peter GortonA research presentation by Pete Gorton (shown at right) helped draw a record crowd for a Halsey Hall SABR Chapter meeting as 64 members and guests gathered at Faith Mennonite Church for the chapter’s fall meeting. Pete is the founder of The Donaldson Network, which chronicles the story and pitching career of John Donaldson.

Pete was the subject of an article in the Minneapolis Star Tribune, Minnesota History: Rekindling a Baseball Great’s Legacy, that noted his upcoming appearance at the SABR meeting, and more than 20 people—including family members—came as a result of the publicity. The group included Tom Donaldson, son of John Donaldson.

Pete has made his presentation available online: Document compiled by the files of The Donaldson Network, 2016 Fall Meeting, Halsey Hall Chapter of SABR

Another special guest at the meeting was Rollie Seltz, a multi-sport athlete (along with his brother Dick) at Humboldt High School and Hamline University in St. Paul. Rollie was a member of the Excelsior baseball team that won the state Class A amateur tournament in 1949, and Rollie also played in the National Basketball Association with the Anderson Packers.

A complete list of attendees:

Howard Luloff, Tom Flynn, Stew Thornley, Brenda Himrich, Art Mugalian, Brent Heutmaker, John Haugen, Warren Woods, Bob Tholkes, Terry Bohn, Kelly Bohn, Dave Lande, Matt Johnson, Jim Cox, Bob Komoroski, Mendal Mearkle, Joe O’Connell, Jim Hurt, Rich Arpi, Frank Kadwell, John Swol, John Gallo, Kevin Bjornson, Gregg Nelson, Roger Godin, Dave Jensen, Mary Manning, Steve Bratkovich, Doug Skipper, Dick Westby, Lee Temanson, Daniel Dorff, Fred Buckland, Hans Van Slooten, Pete Gorton, Cary Smith, Sarah Johnson, David Karpinski, Dan Levitt, Gene Zavadil, Brent Peterson, Bob Wright, Steve Wright, Jacob Carl, Rollie Seltz, Murt Seltz, Tom Nelson, Shane Carlson, Doug Ernst, Bill Axness, Tom Donaldson, Brian Madigan, George Rekela, Michael Fallon, Jerry Janzen, John Drewes, Will Craig, Josh Ostergaard, Stacey Stark, and Kelly, Sam, Frances, John, and Sally Gorton.

Sarah Johnson, Baseball in France and Its Ties to Minnesota, Michael Fallon, How the Dodgers (Inadvertently) Saved Baseball in 1977, and Rich Arpi, Baseball at the Minnesota State Prison at Stillwater: The First 50 Years of the Stars, Grays, and Sisal Sox,1915-1964, also made research presentations.

A complete list of chapter meetings (including regional meetings before the chapter was formed) is available: Officers and Chapter Meetings

Michael Fallon
Frank Quilici

Michael Fallon presented on the 1977 Dodgers (above left), and former Twins player, coach, manager, and broadcaster Frank Quilici (above right) was the featured guest. Frank filled in for Dick Stigman, who was unable to attend.

Chapter meeting

Upcoming Events
The next Fred Souba Hot Stove Saturday Morning, an informal breakfast gathering for the purpose of talking baseball, will be at 9:00 on Saturday, November 12 at Curran’s, 4201 Nicollet Avenue in Minneapolis.

The Halsey Hall Chapter Book Club will next meet Saturday, December 3 at 9:30 a.m. at the usual spot, Barnes & Noble in Har Mar Mall in Roseville. The book selection is Calvin Griffith: Baseball’s Last Dinosaur by Jon Kerr, and Jon will be present at the meeting, as well. The group will also discuss the telecast of the second game of the 1979 American League playoffs. The game is available for viewing on YouTube: 1979 10 04 ALCS Gm 2 California Angels at Baltimore Orioles

To keep abreast of other chapter events or gatherings of chapter members, be sure and like and follow our social media pages:

SABR Halsey Hall Chapter Facebook page

Halsey Hall Chapter Twitter page

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New Members
Matt Johnson is from Zimmerman, Minnesota, and now lives back there after nine years in Seattle. He and his wife, Molly (who have been married just over a year), are expecting a daughter in January.

Matt has a B. A. in English from Gustavus Adolphus and intends to get his secondary teaching certificate. Meanwhile, he is working at his family’s Hardware Hank store in Zimmerman.

Matt was the back-up catcher during the 2000 state tournament when Elk River’s Paul Feiner dealt Joe Mauer his only high-school strikeout.

Matt’s grandpa was friends with Ted Williams when Ted was hanging around Princeton, Minnesota, so Matt is curious about Williams’s history in the area. He is also interesting in major leaguers who grew up in Minnesota and wants to conduct interviews with these players.

Matt works on Twins Almanac, “an unoriginal concept very much copied from Garrison Keillor’s The Writer’s Almanac. Nothing groundbreaking, but I wanted to see more bits of quickly digestible Twins history out there and so far there definitely seems to be an appetite for it (almost 4,000 Twitter followers in first 9 months).”


Born in 1983, Matt shares his November 17 birthday with Tom Seaver, Mike Garcia, Jim Brewer, George Stallings, Orlando Pena, Jeff Nelson, Mitch Williams, Nick Markakis, Danny DeVito, Gordon Lightfoot, Rock Hudson, and Bob Mathias.

Also new to the Halsey Hall Chapter: Ry Siggelkow

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Member News
Cary Smith has a Twitter page worth following, Z B Digital Library: Sports Research & Collections Management, baseball research related with mostly original newspaper clippings and some photographs and artifacts.

Frank White will be presenting Play by Play: Recalling Minnesotans and the Negro Baseball League, at the Minneapolis Central Library from 7 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, November 17. Also on the program are Pete Gorton, Carl Rogan (son of Bullet Rogan), Steve Winfield, and Will Brooks. The event is free, but registration is required: Minnesota Historical Society Calendar

Anthony Bush will be presenting Work or Fight: The 1918 Duluth-Mesaba League & How the Great War Brought Great Baseball to the Twin Ports & the Range on Thursday, November 17 from noon to 1 p.m. at the Underground on the first floor of the St. Louis County Heritage & Arts Center (the Depot), 506 West Michigan Street in Duluth. More information: Lunch with the History People

And, in case you missed it the second time, be sure and check out Howard Luloff’s blog about local sports and game shows: Howilu Sports and Games Network

Here is a fun article by Andy Sturdevant in MinnPost: Willie Mays’ South Minneapolis Neighborhood—for Just Two Months in 1951.

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Official Scoring Quiz
Attendees at the fall chapter meeting had the chance to take a quiz on the rules of official scoring. Some didn’t get a chance to see the answers, so here is the quiz (with the answers under each question):

1. Situation: Tie game, runner on third in the last of the ninth.  Batter hits a drive to left-center that bounces and goes over the fence. Winning run scores. Is the batter credited with a single or double?

a. Double, because the ball bounced over the fence and he is entitled to two bases.

b. Single, because only one base was needed for the winning run to score.

c. Double, but only if the batter continues running until he reaches second base.

Answer: Single. Unless a batter hits a home run out of the playing field (Rule 9.06(g)), the batter can be credited with only as many bases as are advanced by the runner who scores the game-ending run. This is the case even with an automatic extra-base hit.

9.06(f) Subject to the provisions of Rule 9.06(g), when a batter ends a game with a safe hit that drives in as many runs as are necessary to put his team in the lead, the official scorer shall credit such batter with only as many bases on his hit as are advanced by the runner who scores the winning run, and then only if the batter runs out his hit for as many bases as are advanced by the runner who scores the winning run.

Rule 9.06(f) Comment: The official scorer shall apply this rule even when the batter is theoretically entitled to more bases because of being awarded an “automatic” extra-base hit under various provisions of Rules 6.09 and 7.05.

2. A player who is normally a third baseman is playing left field and muffs a fly ball. In determining whether to charge the player with an error, can the official scorer take into account that the player was not playing his normal position?

Answer: No. Ordinary effort, in the section on definitions of terms, is “the effort that a fielder of average skill at a position in that league or classification or leagues should exhibit on a play, with due consideration given to the condition of the field and weather conditions.”

The Comment for ordinary effort defines this as “an objective standard in regard to any particular fielder.  In other words, even if a fielder makes his best effort, if that effort falls short of what an average fielder at that position in that league would have made in a situation, the official scorer should charge that fielder with an error.”

3. Dalkowski walks Meusel. Fingerhuis relieves. Barnhart reaches first on a fielder’s choice as Meusel is forced at second. Barnhart later scores. Is the run charged to Dalkowski or Fingerhuis?

Answer: The run is charged to Dalkowski.

Rule 9.16(g): When pitchers are changed during an inning, the official scorer shall not charge the relief pitcher with any run (earned or unearned) scored by a runner who was on base at the time such relief pitcher entered the game, nor for runs scored by any runner who reaches base on a fielder’s choice that puts out a runner left on base by any preceding pitcher.

Rule 9.16(g) Comment: It is the intent of Rule 9.16(g) to charge each pitcher with the number of runners he put on base, rather than with the individual runners. Example: Peter is pitching. Abel reaches first base on a base on balls. Roger relieves Peter. Baker forces Abel at second bases. Charlie grounds out, advancing Baker to second base. Daniel singles, scoring Baker. Baker’s run is charged to Peter.

4. Hugginkiss reaches base on an error by the shortstop. Ostrowsko singles to right. Hugginkiss tries for third and is thrown out. Ostrowsko later scores. Is the run earned or unearned?

Answer: Earned. Had Hugginkiss been retired on a fielder’s choice, as was the case in question 3, then Ostrowsko would have taken his place as a potential unearned run.  However, this was not a fielder’s choice; when Hugginkiss was thrown out trying to take an extra base on the hit, the effect of the error was wiped out.

5. In a tie game in the last of the ninth, a team has runners at first and second with no out. The batter bunts. The runner from second goes to third, but the runner from first is forced out at second as the batter reaches first with a fielder’s choice. Can the batter be credited with a sacrifice?

a. Yes, because it was clear that his main objective was to get the winning run to third with one out.

b. No

Answer: No.

Rule 9.08(c) states that the official scorer shall “not score a sacrifice bunt when any runner is put out attempting to advance one base on a bunt. . . . ”

6. A batter can be credited with a sacrifice fly even if the outfielder drops the ball if the official scorer thinks the fly was deep enough that the runner could have scored anyway. But what if, after dropping the fly, the outfielder recovers in time to throw to second to force out a runner from first? Can a batter receive a sacrifice fly on a force out?

Answer: Yes.

The comment for Rule 9.08(d) specifically states that a sacrifice fly can be awarded in this situation.

7. With a runner on second, the batter hits a grounder to the shortstop in the hole. The shortstop has no chance to get the batter at first; however, the runner from second tries for third and is thrown out there by the shortstop. Can the batter receive a hit?

Answer: No.

Rule 9.05(b)(3) instructs the official scorer to not credit a base hit when “a pitcher, the catcher or any infielder handles a batted ball and puts out a preceding runner who is attempting to advance one base or to return to his original base, or would have put out such runner with ordinary effort except for a fielding error.”

Note: If the ball had been fielded by an outfielder, who threw a runner from second out at third (because the runner had held up in case the ball were caught), the scorer could credit the batter with a hit. This could happen with a runner only on second, not with runners on first and second; in this case, the runner from second would have been forced at third, and a batter cannot receive a hit on a force out.

For those titillated by this quiz, note that SABR has an Official Scoring Committee you may want to join. Go to Official Scoring Research Committee and click on Join.

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  November 12—Fred Souba Hot Stove Saturday Morning, Curran’s, 42nd and Nicollet, 9:00 a.m.

   December 3Book Club and Vintage Game Video Club, Barnes & Noble, Har Mar Mall, Roseville, 9:30 a.m., Calvin Griffith: Baseball’s Last Dinosaur by Jon Kerr (with an appearance by the author), and Game Two of the 1979 American League playoffs.

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Board of Directors 2016-2017
President—Frank Kadwell
Vice President—Tom Flynn
Secretary—Brent Heutmaker
Treasurer—Jerry Janzen
Gene Gomes
Lloyd Kepple
Doug Skipper

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