Hey SABR dudes: you’re weenies

That’s not me saying it, though. It’s the WaPo’s Gene Weingarten:

Here I am at the annual convention of the Society for American Baseball Research, or SABR, an acronym the group wisely chose over SWORD, for Statistics-Worshiping White Old Retired Dudes. This room is definitely pale and male and pretty long in the tooth, but I have to admit that what it lacks in youth, hipness and diversity, it more than makes up for in potbellies.

It kind of goes on like that for a while. You’d think with a two-week lead time between the reporting and publication that he’d have figured out that it’s mostly the younger nerdy types and not the older potbellied types who are the stats people there, but that’s old media for you.

He spends the last chunk of the article trying to figure out why there aren’t any left handed catchers anymore. Instead of writing 700 snark-filled words about it, he should have asked Miguel Tejada. Or at least read his words in this New York Times article from a couple of weeks ago:

“I guess all the lefties end up as pitchers,” Astros shortstop Miguel Tejada said.

Neyer agrees with Tejada. And wouldn’t you know it? Neither Rob nor Miquel are old, retired, or potbellied.

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  1. Grant said...

    I think Miguel was kinda potbellied when he was with the Orioles, too. Maybe he’s shaped up with the ‘Stros?

    And Weingarten is that worst type of newspaper writer: the hacky “humor” columnist who shows up on Sunday to bore you to death.

  2. Bob Tufts said...

    What an utter piece of crap. If he had even bothered to go to the SABR website, Gene would have also noticed the numerous groups that examine specific parts of baseball’s history.

    Youth, hipness and diversity may be lacking at SABR, but not accuracy. SABR will provbably last longer than the Washington Post, because they actually research the work they publish.

  3. kardo said...

    Looking my own team, we have 2 lefties who used to catch when they were younger, but they don’t catch for us, simply because we don’t have a catcher glove for lefties.

  4. Richard in Dallas said...

    There aren’t any left-handed catchers because, in the earliest stages of youth baseball, the teams provide catcher’s equipment.  In the interest of getting more balls, only one catcher’s mitt is purchased per team.  Since you only have one, and the vast majority of kids are righties, guess which direction the mitt goes?

  5. Wooden U. Lykteneau said...

    Craig – Consider yourself quite the detective: Finding *any* baseball story in the WaPo while the [racist-name football team] is in training camp is a challenge.

  6. lisa gray said...

    are all yall SABR guys bringing up YOUR daughters to be stat geeks?????

    and seems to me that the old, fat White guy who write that piece of racist, sexist, ageist crap in a dying paper needs to go and look in the mirror…

  7. APBA Guy said...

    One of the guys in our league went to the SABR convention this year, presumably to gain an edge over the rest of us. He is neither old nor retired, he is white though, and he reported that there was a wide range of ages represented there, but the presenters, ie the guys doing actual statistical work, were also neither old nor retired.

    Weingarten must be trying to imitate Tony Kornheiser, who has parlayed his “humor” and sportswriting mash into a comfortable existence. When I was reading Tony, though, he at least had a passing familiarity with the facts (ie the Redskins stink, etc), unlike Weingarten.

  8. kevin said...

    For the uninitiated, Gene Weingarten is a humor columnist.  Everything he does involves exaggeration.  Maybe next time he will write that SABR attendees don’t have a sense of humor.

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