Biggest baseball library west of Cooperstown in San Diego!

Visitor to eighth floor of San Diego's downtown public library checks out photographs in the Sullivan Family Baseball Research Center.
Visitor to eighth floor of San Diego’s downtown public library checks out photographs in the Sullivan Family Baseball Research Center.

Many San Diegans don’t realize that our city–our amazing new Central Library, to be exact–contains a unique and important repository of American history. The Sullivan Family Baseball Research Center, located on the eighth floor of the downtown library, is home to The Society for American Baseball Research “SABR” Collection. It constitutes the largest baseball library west of Cooperstown! Shelves of books, magazines, journals, scrapbooks and other historical documents, and many photographs, have recorded in detail the fascinating history of American baseball. And it’s all open to the public!

The research center is directly adjacent to the spacious, high-domed reading room. In the center of the collection is a shiny sculpture of a player swinging a bat, titled Male baseball #1, created in 2009 by artist Yoram Wolberger. On one wall among many old photos, a video screen shows scenes from baseball history. This is one super cool section of the library!

According to the website of The Society for American Baseball Research: “The Baseball Research Center opened in 2001, with an initial collection of books and microfilm donated by SABR’s Ted Williams Chapter. In the years since, it has grown to more than 3,000 publications, books, and journals, and 300 microfilm reels.”

Today, the collection is housed in museum-like grandeur, and to peruse the many photographs and titles is like taking a wonderful, nostalgic journey back through time. Anyone who is a fan of baseball in San Diego needs to check it out!

Bronze and chrome Yoram Wolberger statue of a baseball player swinging a bat.
Bronze and chrome Yoram Wolberger statue of a baseball player swinging a bat.
Many historical photographs can be enjoyed on one wall of the baseball research center.
Many historical photographs can be enjoyed on one wall of the baseball research center.
Anyone who is interested in sports, and America's Pastime in particular, should visit the SABR Collection in San Diego.
Anyone who is interested in sports, and America’s Pastime in particular, should visit the SABR Collection in San Diego.
The collection includes many books, periodicals and artifacts concerning the great sport of baseball.
The collection includes many books, periodicals and artifacts concerning the great sport of baseball.
Photo of one display case, which contains a copy of Baseball Magazine, plus various programs and record books.
Photo of one display case, which contains a copy of Baseball Magazine, plus various programs and record books.
Another exhibit, with an old newspaper, World Series Records, Sporting News publication, team photograph.
Another display case, with an old newspaper, World Series Records, Sporting News publication, team photograph.
Shelves in the library contain hundreds of baseball reference books and registers.
Shelves in the library contain hundreds of baseball reference books and registers.
One small exhibit focuses on fan photography, called Fantography.
One small exhibit focuses on fan photography, called Fantography.
Cool photo of the KGB Chicken between two Padrettes. Ted Giannoulas later became known as The Famous San Diego Chicken.
Cool photo of the KGB Chicken between two Padrettes. Ted Giannoulas later became known as The Famous San Diego Chicken.
Image of San Diego past superstar Dave Winfield in stadium greeting fans.
Image of San Diego past superstar Dave Winfield in stadium greeting fans.
Wonderful photo of San Diego Padres legendary Hall of Fame player Tony Gwynn with his family out on the playing field.
Wonderful photo of San Diego Padres legendary Hall of Fame player Tony Gwynn with his family out on the playing field.

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Published by

Richard Schulte

Downtown San Diego has been my home for many years. My online activities reflect my love for writing, blogging, walking and photography.

5 thoughts on “Biggest baseball library west of Cooperstown in San Diego!”

  1. Wow, what a cool walk down memory lane! I will have to check that out when I’m there in august. I remember the Tony Quinn years (decades). BTW, in high school, I interviewed Ted Giannoulas for the Helix High school newspaper in 1977. Coolest interview I ever did. My brother is a big baseball fan; I sent him the e-mail message of your post! Thanks for posting, Richard!

    Liked by 1 person

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