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Braintrust & Mailing Lists  Craig Tomarkin's Braintrust Newsletter, November 2001

Friends and Braintrust Subscribers,

Lot's of news to share…

First, I have to thank you all for visiting. continues to see record traffic. This season was the busiest ever and October was the best month ever. This bucks the trends I've heard about from friends with other baseball sites..

I also want to report that the expansion of into a hub for baseball analysis is going better than expected. Visit the "Analysis" section of the site to read what's new (pink button at the bottom of each page).

I'm excited to announce the addition of John B. Holway, the esteemed author of 10 baseball books and well-known Negro Leagues author and researcher. He posted several articles that are not available anywhere else, including a controversial one that has been banned from certain high profile baseball subscriber lists. So, enjoy!

The Inside Scoop

Holway is best known for his thirty years of outstanding Negro Leagues research. The pinnacle may be his recent book "The Complete Book of Baseball's Negro Leagues."

The cause for his recent banning is his other recent book, "The Baseball Astrologer and Other Weird Tales." It caused many to believe he is pretty "far out."

During the research stage of this project, Holway released some of the material on baseball subscriber lists such as SABR-L and the feedback he got was unnerving. He has been virtually banned from posting to baseball subscriber lists as a result of his heretical astrological views.

Decide for yourself what you want to believe. Some will say the material is fact, and of course others will say fiction.

Meanwhile, Holway will be contributing new articles periodically, so check back every now and then to see what's new. He's also making autographed copies of his recent two books available.

The Search Continues

I will be looking to find more "Gurus" to represent other areas of baseball interest. So far it looks like the Negro Leagues are secure. I'll be seeking a ballparks expert and a Japanese baseball expert next. I'm also taking to people at the AAGBPL (Girls Professional Baseball from the 1940's popularized by Tom Hanks, Rosie and Madonna in "A League of Our Own") to find a contributing author.

I'm in talks with a webzine called Baseball Ink to find a way to incorporate some of their interesting poetry and other material submitted by amateur authors. You will find their link in the analysis section. Please give your opinions about their stuff.

Any of you who has any contributing commentary, photos, articles, their experiences or whatever may to submit it for online publication by emailing me. You don't have to be a Guru to make a valuable and interesting contribution.


The Guru's free historical stats database for the Internet is now available!

It links to the Internet and contains all of the batting, pitching and fielding data for every player ever (1871-2001). Easy to use and allows you to print reports. Data for the Internet database are based on many sources and relies heavily on The MacMillan Baseball Encyclopedia. Enjoy!

Click here to Download the Guru's Free Database. You can also download it by going to the "Data Archives/Baseball Stats" section of the web tour. If you prefer spreadsheet data, sample the Guru's Private Stock, which is also made freely available.


Last months expansion of the bookstore to offer "Amazon's Recommended" baseball books by category to each section of the web tour has generated positive feedback. It provides fresh and relevant reading suggestions for each section of the web tour. I'm pleased that it is working out well.

My obligatory plug: buying through my bookstore instead of directly through Amazon gets you the same prices and service but also help keep up and running. Please use the search box in the bookstore or on any page in the web tour. It's much appreciated.

Web Tour

I updated the data in the Hall of Fame and World Series sections to be current through the 2001 seasons end.

And, as always, I continued to upgrade the web tour by adding new and exciting links. The most noteworthy addition was Digital Ballparks. USA Today awarded as a HOT SITE for November 8th. This honor is one of the hardest to get, and is only awarded to a handful of sites... due to the fact that USA today is the only nationwide newspaper in the country and has tremendous traffic, this is one of the highest honors that can be achieved by a small website.

I am particularly happy for them because I have been working with Eric and Wendy (who own the site) recently. They are on a mission to provide photos of every park still standing and I supplied them with a list of MLB parks, which are no longer being used. They recently added a link for I will pursue them as potential representatives as our "Ballparks" Guru.

The Game

Some of you have asked when the 2001 season cards will be available. Please be patient. I've got my hands full, as I'm sure you understand. I'm also in the process of adding several cards sets of All-Stars and Hall of Famers to be used for drafting your own leagues. I'm also in talks with the AAGPBL to acquire data. Won't that be cool? Plus, I'm considering making Japanese cards.

So, that's what's new. Keep on visiting, keep on emailing and tell your friends about the most interesting baseball site on the web!


Craig Tomarkin

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