Leonard Robert Davids
Bob Davids was an American author and researcher who was one of the founders of the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR). He obtained a degree in journalism and a master's degree in history from the University of Missouri. He later obtained a PhD in international relations from Georgetown University. Beginning in 1951, when he moved to Washington, DC to work as a civilian employee of the Department of Defense, Davids began contributing articles to The Sporting News. He continued through the mid-1960s, when TSN shifted its focus.
Davids then published his own baseball newsletter called Baseball Briefs. His work spawned the idea for an organization devoted to baseball research. On August 10, 1971, in Cooperstown, NY, Davids and fifteen other baseball researchers formed SABR. He was the group's first President and is considered its founding member (collectively, they are known as the "original 15").
Davids was not a full-time researcher. He was a federal employee from 1951 until his retirement in 1981. He worked for the Atomic Energy Commission and various other agencies after the Department of Defense. He was also a scholar in the history of the United States Congress. He is the author of the books Great Hitting Pitchers, This Date in Baseball History and the three-volume Minor League Baseball Stars.
A World War II-era Air Force veteran, Bob Davids died in 2002. He is buried at Arlington National Cemetery. In 2010, he was among the initial class of winners so the Henry Chadwick Award. Since 1985, SABR presents an annual "Bob Davids Award" which "honors SABR members whose contributions to SABR and baseball reflect the ingenuity, integrity, and self-sacrifice of the founder and past president of SABR, L. Robert 'Bob' Davids". It is the society's highest honor.
- David Vincent: "Bob Davids", in The Baseball Research Journal, SABR, Volume 39, Number 1 (Summer 2010), pp. 124.