Reanimated

About a year and a half ago I realized I was within striking distance of completing my 1971 Topps set. Though I’ve always been a card collector, in recent years I had been limited to buying the new Topps factory set. That was it. I wasn’t active, I wasn’t interested, and, while I loved my cards, I wasn’t involved with them emotionally.

2016-Topps-Baseball-Factory-Set-Hobby

Finishing off the ’71 set was great fun and I turned to 1970. I was making good headway, having a blast doing so, but nothing, and I mean nothing, brought me back to the joys of the hobby more than when Mark Armour and Chris Dial restarted the SABR Baseball Cards Committee and a blog.

I met Mark once, two years ago at the SABR convention in Chicago, where I was presenting and pushing Split Season. (I also wrote an Earl Williams  bio for the SABR Bioproject, but that was years ago and I bet Mark doesn’t remember that.) Mark and I started talking about how to elevate the new cards committee, find writers, start a Twitter account, and so on. We also started working on a few card sets together. Instant buddies!

I tend to write when I need to write and, since I’m not working on a book right now, writing isn’t tops on my list. I remember hearing that Ringo never practices; he plays when he has to. That’s my approach to writing, but the cards blog is compelling to me. I’ve written a bunch of posts and most aren’t about cards, they’re about memories and life, with cards as vehicle to tell the story. It’s a reality of mine that cards have been a constant presence in my life and being back into cards, deeply, has made me so very happy.

Boys Collecting Baseball Cards

The SABR convention is starting tomorrow. I couldn’t fit the entire multi-day event into my schedule, but there was no way I was going to miss the Baseball Cards Committee meeting on Saturday and a chance to hang out with Mark and many others who I’ve met these last few months via the blog and Twitter. I’ve never been someone to reach out to trade cards and share with strangers, but, again, through the cards committee, I’ve virtually met a lot of kindred spirits, some who I’ll meet for real in a few days.

So I owe a huge thank you and much gratitude to Mark and Chris for jump-starting my dead card collecting battery and to all those who read, comment, share and collect. We’re all one big happy family.

Author: Jeff Katz

Jeff Katz is Mayor of Cooperstown, the “Birthplace of Baseball” and home to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. His latest book, Split Season:1981 - Fernandomania, the Bronx Zoo, and the Strike that Saved Baseball, (Thomas Dunne Books, 2015), received national attention, with coverage appearing in The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Sporting News and NPR’s Only a Game, among others. Katz appeared on ESPN’s Olbermann and The Sporting Life with Jeremy Schaap and MLB Network’s MLB Now, with Brian Kenny. Split Season: 1981 was a finalist for the 2016 Casey Award for Best Baseball Book of the Year.

5 thoughts on “Reanimated”

  1. Well written, kind of captures the spirit of the hobby and collecting community at its best. Team Phungo will be there as well. Saturday is definitely a Highlight. Might even bring a few baseball cards 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This blog is a huge part of why I started collecting again. It’s also a huge reason why I’m now a SABR member. I’m sad to miss the committee meeting as this whole sharing of memories and experiences attached to our cards is a a community which, while I’m still new to, I very much enjoy being a part of.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I was very excited when I saw that the Baseball Cards Subcommittee was getting active again. I rejoined SABR last year so I could augment my own card blog with good research from TSN and, in part, to thank all the hard work done on the Bio Project on which I lean heavily.

    I wish I could join y’all in New York, but I have to be in Utah for a planning meeting for another organization. I just will have to wait till next year!

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s