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Event to highlight Jewish involvement in baseball

Mar. 24—As the Major League Baseball season opens, an event will be held to portray the history of Jews in baseball.

"The Diamond District — Jews in Baseball" will be presented in Cooperstown at 11 a.m. Sunday, April 2, in the Village Hall. The event is sponsored by Temple Beth El.

According to a media release, two speakers, Jeff Katz and William Simons, will give presentations. Katz is the former mayor of Cooperstown, author, and executive director of the Community Foundation of Otsego County. Simons is professor emeritus at SUNY Oneonta and former chair of the History Department.

Katz' talk is titled "Marvin Miller: From Brooklyn to Cooperstown." Miller's story and its significance to the history of baseball is what drew Katz to the topic of his talk, he said. Katz is the author of "Split Season 1981," which he was able to write and have published during his time as mayor, he said. It was well-received and critically acclaimed, Katz said. He called it "a fun year."

Miller's story was, "always impressive to me," he said.

"A lot of times, important people get forgotten, I wouldn't say that Marvin is in danger of being forgotten, but people get whitewashed, the reasons people get recognized are lost over time," Katz said. "Marvin wasn't meek and quiet, he had a nature to cause trouble, for a good cause."

Miller's efforts had "a good impact" on baseball and it's "important to share," Katz said. "It looks like a fun event, it's the beginning of baseball season, I hope we can get people to come out, listen to Bill and I's talks, and talk about baseball, that's always a good time," he said.

Simons' talk is titled, "The Jews, Dodgers and Brooklyn: The Jackie Robinson Decade." It will examine the relationship between Brooklyn's Jewish community and the Dodgers, according to a media release.