Saturday, November 19, 2011

Arizona Major League Alumni (AZMLA) Awards Dinner, 2011

On Friday Nov. 4, I attended the Arizona Major League Alumni Awards Dinner. There I saw Roland Hemond receive the AZMLA Lifetime Achievement Award, and also had the pleasure of meeting female umpire Perry Lee Barber. Barber has experience officiating in Japan and is also colleagues with Kazuo Sayama, Japanese baseball historian who I referenced in my book for the 1927 tour to Japan of Zenimura's Fresno Athletic Club and Lon Goodwin's Philadelphia Royal Giants.

Photo: Roland Hemond and Perry Lee Barber
Photo: Me and Perry Lee Barber

Here's what the SABR press had to say about the event:

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SABR Member Roland Hemond Receives AZMLA Lifetime Achievement Award

Friday Nov ,4 2011 -- In recognition of his decades-long effort to support those in need, Roland Hemond received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Arizona Major League Alumni during the third annual AZMLA awards dinner on Friday night in Tempe, Arizona.

"Roland is one of the most respected men in baseball," said Arizona Fall League director Steve Cobb, who presented the award to Hemond. "He has earned that respect, I believe, by helping others succeed and helping those who have fallen on hard times."

Earlier this year, Hemond became the second recipient of the National Baseball Hall of Fame's Buck O'Neil Lifetime Achievement Award.

Laurel Prieb, a member of the SABR Advisory Board, delivered the keynote speech at Friday's dinner, which was part of the weekend festivities during the SABR Arizona Fall League Conference. He recounted the exciting end of the regular season and postseason in Major League Baseball, and said the offseason is becoming just as much fun.

Attendees also took in the "Play Ball: The Cactus League Experience", an exhibit at the Arizona Historical Society Museum in Tempe that puts Arizona’s rich spring training history on display. SABR member Bill Staples Jr. was on hand to sign copies of his book, Kenichi Zenimura: Japanese American Baseball Pioneer, and passing out baseball cards of the World War II internment camp survivor.

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