Thursday, March 14, 2013

Book Review - Moneyball

Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair GameMoneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game by Michael Lewis

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Moneyball is definitely one of the better books I have read in the past year or so, I found it easy to page through, the chapter's defined nicely, and tells a very interesting story about a new methodology in baseball. The most eye opening experience for me was to realize that the baseball world was (and in some corners, still is) so subjective. Being of a younger generation, and an I.T. guy to boot, the concept of not using data for analysis and improvement is just an odd concept. It makes me realize how so many other aspects of our society still prefer the "eye test" over using actual, objective data when available. It certainly makes you appreciate the technology we have today, and more importantly appreciate author's such as Bill James (a prevalent person in the book) who painstakingly had to manually calculate and write up the statistics we can now have immediate access to, all formattable and sortable in a worksheet!

The only caveat to this book is that you really should be a baseball fan to read it. The added element to this book was knowing the players Michael Lewis refers to. The names Jason Giambi, Jeremy Giambi and Kevin Youkilis are all prevalent in middle chapter's, and to truly appreciate their value to the A's, and to other clubs, it's good to have atleast a basic understanding of these players. I also want to mention that if you are a fan of a team who likes to spend (such as I am, as a Yankees fan), this is a HARD book to read, as it makes you appreciate those teams who build through the draft and scout and study and scrap and improve, knowing they don't have a piggy bank "just in case". That being said, if you're an I.T. fellow, AND a sports\baseball fan.. both of which I am.. read this book.

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