Bob Wilber grew up aspiring to follow in his father’s baseball footsteps, and while he was able to secure a full college scholarship and later spend parts of six years in professional ball, as a player, coach, and scout, his mother’s writing, communications, and public relations skills were what eventually defined his career. After a successful and adventurous sports-marketing trek through the sports-apparel business, agency work, and professional indoor soccer, he saw his first drag race as he closed in on his 40th birthday. Little did he know that he’d go on to spend 20 consecutive years as a team manager and PR representative for Del Worsham and then Tim Wilkerson, two of the most popular Funny Car drivers on the NHRA tour. At the conclusion of the 2015 season, Bob ended his drag racing run in order to take on an important personal assignment. Over the course of 2016 he wrote his autobiography, entitled “Bats, Balls, & Burnouts” and submitted it to the publisher in early February. It was released in late May, 2017 and is available on Amazon.com and other major online book retailers, in both printed and digital formats.

Reconnecting With Ken Holtzman
Jan 25, 2012   //   by bwilber

Ken Holtzman pitched in the big leagues for 14 years, winning 174 games on the strength of a sterling career ERA of 3.49, while striking out 1,601 batters while hurling for the Cubs, A’s, Yankees and Orioles. Born and raised in St. Louis, Ken and my oldest brother Del Jr. were on the same path throughout their developmental years, as they matriculated through the local amateur baseball scene.

Recently, thanks to TPGF, Del Jr. and Ken were able to make contact again, catching up on many of the memories they will forever cherish and never forget.

Your contributions: Add a Comment | Continue Reading »
Leadership
Dec 2, 2011   //   by bwilber

Although The Perfect Game Foundation and the Bob On Baseball blog were both established to be baseball-centric, we’ve always had a bigger-picture goal of eventually expanding to assist young aspirants in other endeavors within the sports world. That will come someday, but in the meantime we’re also aware that stories can come along that are simply too good to pass up, and today’s story of leadership is just such a story.

Used here with the permission of the author, Sally Jenkins of the Washington Post, this story vividly explains what true leadership is, what it looks like, sounds like, and how it works. It’s a truly terrific explanation, and a great read. It may not be a baseball story, concentrating on balls, strikes, and outs but it is a sports story that easily hits the subject matter out of the park.

Your contributions: Add a Comment | Continue Reading »
Welcome Guest Blogger Tara Wellman
Nov 15, 2011   //   by bwilber

On this installment of Bob On Baseball, we welcome another fine young writer who is striving to make her mark in sports. I met Tara Wellman at the U.S. Nationals, one of the biggest drag races in the world, when I was busy handling my “real job” as Team Manager for Tim Wilkerson’s NHRA Funny Car team. Tara was “dragged” (pun intended) to the race by a friend who was already a fan. Within minutes of meeting her, our mutual love of baseball became the topic and the sheer determination I could see in her eyes impressed me. I immediately knew that this young lady was focused on career success, and nothing I’ve seen or heard from her since has diminished that assessment.

Your contributions: Add a Comment | Continue Reading »
Welcome Guest Blogger Coral Rae Marshall
Oct 19, 2011   //   by bwilber

Today, here at Bob On Baseball, we welcome another guest blogger to our ranks. Coral Marshall is a graduate student in Sport Management at California State University – Long Beach. She did her undergrad work at the University of California – San Diego, where she studied Communications and Russian & Soviet Studies. He passions include all things baseball, communication theory, Russian literature, studying new media, and reading by the pool (her words!)

Coral is a wonderful example of exactly the type of person The Perfect Game Foundation looks to assist, as she aims to find her place and make her mark on the business side of our great national pastime. Her succinct interpretation of how legends and heroes are born is first-rate, and a fine read.

Enjoy!

Your contributions: 2 Comments | Continue Reading »
The Unscientific Way To Pick A Bat
Jul 27, 2011   //   by bwilber

Hanging on the wall, here in my home office, are two baseball bats. One is somewhat famous, the other nearly anonymous. As you can see, they straddle a framed copy of Baseball Magazine, from 1953, and the catcher in the cover photo is my father.

His bat hangs to the left, but it’s not just any Louisville Slugger and it’s not just any Del Wilber autographed model. This very bat is the one he used on August 27, 1951 at Shibe Park in Philadelphia, while playing against the Cincinnati Reds. On that very night, Big Del achieved something so outstanding we have named this charity in reference to his accomplishment. He came to bat three times, took three swings, and hit three solo home runs, accounting for all of the scoring in the Phillies’ 3-0 win over the Reds. It’s a special bat.

Big Del had his Louisville Slugger designed to fit his needs, and since the bat was specifically cut and weighted to his exact preference, Hillerich & Bradsby designated it as the W15 model.

The bat on the right is one of mine, and one of only two Bob Wilber autographed bats left on the planet. It’s a U1 model, originally designed for some other player, but at some point in my young career I picked one up and liked the feel of it. I therefore, for better or for worse, stuck with the U1 until my fleeting minor league career was over. I blame the U1.

Your contributions: 3 Comments | Continue Reading »