I have a new barber

barberHave you ever gotten into a conversation with someone outside the context of APBA and found out that they play the game?

That happened to me yesterday.  It was time for me to get a haircut so I went to the barbershop in the University of Illinois campustown.  It’s a great old-fashioned barbershop run by two men called Dave & Gene’s Barber Shop.  It’s the kind with a pool table in the back and sports memorabilia on the walls.  You know the type.

Well, I’ve always had my hair cut by Gene and he does a great job.  This time, he was out so it was Dave who up to the plate.  Well, we started talking about usual topics.  Weather first then of course Illini sports which is pretty common given the geographical location.  I mentioned he didn’t have an Illinois Baseball poster on the wall (and would he like one?).  The conversation steered toward baseball and Dave eventually asked if I was in any fantasy leagues.

Well, I explained I wasn’t in any fantasy leagues but I do play a “simulation baseball game based on stats from the year before”.

“Is that anything like APBA?”, he asked.

“Wait, APBA?  You know about APBA?”

From there, Dave and I kept talking about APBA for the rest of my haircut.  Turns out, Dave has been playing APBA for years.  He has been in leagues and even knows others in town who play APBA.  Long story short (I know, too late), we will be in touch again.  I’ve given him my contact info and yes, I gave him The APBA Blog web address too.  Dave if you’re reading this, I’ll be bringing the poster by next week.

APBA is not something that generally comes up in casual conversation.  Have any of you met someone who plays APBA in the wild?

Thomas Nelshoppen

I am an IT consultant by day and an APBA media mogul by night. My passions are baseball (specifically Illini baseball), photography and of course, APBA. I have been fortunate to be part of the basic game Illowa APBA League since 1980 as well as the BBW Boys of Summer APBA League since 2014. I am slogging through a 1966 NL replay and hope to finish before I die.


  1. Tom, great story, amazing how many of us are around, where you least expect it!

  2. Yes, I was doing some yardwork in my front yard several years ago while wearing my APBA T shirt. A friend of mine whom I usually shared a daily train ride to our jobs in downtown Chicago rode by on his bike and notice my shirt. He said that he used to play APBA while growing up. I reintroduced him to the game and he was one of the participants at the very first Chicagoland APBA Baseball World Series in 2013–Pete Gill.

  3. Another story…I brought my APBA game to a church men’s retreat a couple of years ago after I had moved back to the Richmond area. One of the guys at the retreat mentioned he used to play APBA growing up too. He currently plays in our Richmond tournaments.

  4. I never have. I don’t bring it up anymore, because people look at me like I’m insane. I just let them think I do scrapbooking or counted cross stitch.

  5. Great story thanks for shoutout it’s all ways great talking apba.like the card of the week idea.thanks for bringing up good memories Dave

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