Its been a bit over two years since Chris Dial and I started this committee. My original plan was to create this blog, get committee members to write for it, and then use various SABR fora to promote it. I had been involved with SABR committees for years, and this was a somewhat radical approach. But “baseball cards” was a decidedly less academic, less formal, more “fun”, subject matter than previous SABR committees, one that did not fit the traditional 1980s model.
It was Jeff Katz who told me we needed a dedicated Twitter account — I had been on Twitter for a few years but was only occasionally active. We also started a Facebook group, and that was that. The country might be falling apart, but we had a baseball cards committee up and running.
And it worked!
The most successful SABR committees have produced some sort of collective work: a database, or a book, or an on-line project. I still think we should try to do something like this, though we have not.
What we have built is a community.
I’d love to sit here and claim that this was my intention all along, but that would be untrue. I was primarily thinking about the blog — as a SABR committee veteran, I wanted content. That’s what SABR does. It turns out we got both.
I knew many of you before this group was formed (though I did not necessarily know the depths of your card passions), but many of you I have met — in person or otherwise — through this group. I had no idea two years ago that I would be exchanging baseball cards in the mail with people in this group. Buying cards from eBay is easy enough — but sending/receiving cards with friends? Much better. My favorite part of this group is seeing all of the Twitter posts about cards you are sending each other. Please keep them coming — try to tag @SABRbbcards and I will be better at retweeting from our main account.
My one goal for this committee in the coming year is that more people participate. We have a core of blog writers, each great and different, and you can be one of them. You can just write about what you are collecting, or about your favorite set, or favorite card.
This is a place where the 1956 Topps set and the 1990 Fleer set get an equal shake. “Junk Wax” is not a term I use, because all cards are loved by someone. We are not one voice around here.
I have been collecting since I was a little kid, and many of you have written about cards from a new angle that I had never even considered before.
If you are on Twitter, jump in. Tell us what you want to collect, what you have extra of. Join the conversation. Hey, you might even meet some people along the way.
Happy New Year!