The Society for American Baseball Research was established in Cooperstown, New York, in August 1971 by Bob Davids of Washington, D.C. The Society's mission is to foster the research and dissemination of the history and record of baseball, while generating interest in the game. SABR is based in Phoenix, Arizona.
SABR, which is pronounced "saber" and whose acronym led to the creation of the word sabermetrics, the usage of mathematical tools to analyze baseball, is about much more than statistics. Members include not only "sabermetricians" Bill James, perhaps the best known SABR member to the general public, and Rob Neyer, but also other people active in the baseball world such as Keith Olbermann, Craig R. Wright, Roland Hemond, and Bob Costas. Jeff Bajenaru was believed to have been (until 2006) the only active Major League Baseball player with a SABR membership; Elden Auker, Larry Dierker, and Andy Seminick also have been involved.
Some of the more prominent members of SABR include:
Only a minority of members pursue "number crunching" research. Rather, SABR offers a community of fans organized in two ways. Research Committees study a particular issue. Regional Chapters are for members in geographic proximity. They are frequently named after baseball personalities relevant to the region.
SABR members keep in touch through online directories and electronic mailing lists set up through the SABR headquarters. The headquarters also maintains a number of research tools on its website, including a lending library, home run and triple play logs, and course syllabi related to the game.
SABR holds annual conventions in a different city each year. The conference generally includes panel discussions, research presentations, city-specific tourism, a ballgame, and an awards banquet. The 2007 convention in St. Louis, Missouri set the attendance record with 726 registered attendees out of approximately 7,000 SABR members. The organization also sponsors a baseball analytics conference in Phoenix and an annual Negro Leagues conference, held in a different location each year.
SABR annual awards include:
- Bob Davids Award: for exceptional SABR members who have made contributions to SABR and baseball that reflect ingenuity, integrity, and self-sacrifice. It is SABR's highest honor, and was established in 1985.
- Henry Chadwick Award: for baseball researchers—historians, statisticians, annalists, and archivists.
- Seymour Medal: best book of baseball history or biography published during the preceding calendar year.
- McFarland-SABR Baseball Research Award: for authors of the best articles on baseball history or biography completed during the preceding calendar year (published or unpublished).
- Sporting News-SABR Baseball Research Award: for projects which do not fit the criteria for The Seymour Medal or the McFarland-SABR Award.
- Jerry Malloy Book Prize: best book-length nonfiction manuscript submitted by a member of SABR.
- Doug Pappas Research Award: best oral research presentation at the Annual Convention.
- Lee Allen Award: for the best baseball research project at the annual National History Day competition.
- Jack Kavanagh Memorial Youth Baseball Research Award: research paper by a researcher in grades 6–8 (middle school category), grades 9–12 (high school category), or undergraduates 22 and under (College Category).
Past convention sites and featured speakers
- "Bob Davids". Society for American Baseball Research. Retrieved 2011-12-18.
- Established in November 2009, the Henry Chadwick Award was first presented in 2010. "Henry Chadwick Award". Society for American Baseball Research. Retrieved 2011-12-17.
- "Henry Chadwick Award". Baseball-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved 2011-12-17.
- "SABR Creates New "Henry Chadwick Award": James, Ritter, Palmer Among Honorees". OriolesHangout. Retrieved 2011-12-19.
- Chuck, Bill (February 15, 2011). "SABR Announces 2011 Chadwick Award Recipients". Billy-Ball. Retrieved 2011-12-19.
- Harold Seymour and his wife Dorothy Seymour Mills together wrote a three-volume history: Baseball: The Early Years (1960), Baseball: The Golden Age (1971), and Baseball: The People's Game (1991). "Harold Seymour and Dorothy Seymour Mills". Society for American Baseball Research. Retrieved 2011-12-18.
- The Seymour Medal was first awarded in 1996, at the SABR national convention. SABR held the first Seymour Medal Conference in 1999, at Cleveland State University, in conjunction with the presentation of the medal. "The Seymour Medal". Society for American Baseball Research. Retrieved 2011-12-19.
- "SABR and The Seymour Medal: How Did it Happen?". Dr. Harold Seymour, Baseball Historian. drharoldseymour.com. Retrieved 2011-12-19.
- "The Seymour Medal: Winners and Finalists". Dr. Harold Seymour, Baseball Historian. drharoldseymour.com. Retrieved 2011-12-19.
- "Seymour Medal Award". Baseball-Almanac. Retrieved 2011-12-19.
- Mondout, Patrick. "Seymour Medal Honorees". BaseballChronology.com. Retrieved 2011-12-19.
- See also: Baseball awards #Baseball book of the year.
- The McFarland award was "previously named The Macmillan-SABR Baseball Research Award (1987-1999)", according to "McFarland-SABR Baseball Research Award". Society for American Baseball Research. Retrieved 2012-02-17.
- Keri, Jonah (ed.) (2006). Baseball Between The Numbers: Why Everything You Know About the Game is Wrong. Basic Books. ISBN 0-465-00596-9 [Amazon-US | Amazon-UK].
- Lewis, Michael (2004). Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game. Norton. ISBN 0-393-32481-8 [Amazon-US | Amazon-UK].
- Ross, Ken (2004). A Mathematician at the Ballpark: Odds and Probabilities for Baseball Fans. Plume. ISBN 978-0-452-28782-2 [Amazon-US | Amazon-UK].