Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game

Moneyball The Art of Winning an Unfair Game Billy Beane general manager of MLB s Oakland A s and protagonist of Michael Lewis s Moneyball had a problem how to win in the Major Leagues with a budget that s smaller than that of nearly every oth

Billy Beane, general manager of MLB s Oakland A s and protagonist of Michael Lewis s Moneyball, had a problem how to win in the Major Leagues with a budget that s smaller than that of nearly every other team Conventional wisdom long held that big name, highly athletic hitters and young pitchers with rocket arms were the ticket to success But Beane and his staff, buoyedBilly Beane, general manager of MLB s Oakland A s and protagonist of Michael Lewis s Moneyball, had a problem how to win in the Major Leagues with a budget that s smaller than that of nearly every other team Conventional wisdom long held that big name, highly athletic hitters and young pitchers with rocket arms were the ticket to success But Beane and his staff, buoyed by massive amounts of carefully interpreted statistical data, believed that wins could be had by affordable methods such as hitters with high on base percentage and pitchers who get lots of ground outs Given this information and a tight budget, Beane defied tradition and his own scouting department to build winning teams of young affordable players and inexpensive castoff veterans Lewis was in the room with the A s top management as they spent the summer of 2002 adding and subtracting players and he provides outstanding play by play In the June player draft, Beane acquired nearly every prospect he coveted few of whom were coveted by other teams and at the July trading deadline he engaged in a tense battle of nerves to acquire a lefty reliever Besides being one of the most insider accounts ever written about baseball, Moneyball is populated with fascinating characters We meet Jeremy Brown, an overweight college catcher who most teams project to be a 15th round draft pick Beane takes him in the first Sidearm pitcher Chad Bradford is plucked fr

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Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game

  1. Michael Lewis, the best selling author of Liar s Poker, The Money Culture, The New New Thing, Moneyball, The Blind Side, Panic, Home Game, The Big Short, and Boomerang, among other works, lives in Berkeley, California, with his wife and three children.

610 Reply to “Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game”

  1. I read Moneyball at a time when I wasn t reading too much besides preschool kids books and reread it for the baseball book club I am a part of on good reads Michael Lewis follows the story of general manager Billy Bean and his 2002 Oakland As, a low budget baseball team that managed to win their division going away What is remarkable is that Bean built his team focusing on sabermetrics, not home runs and RBIs He knew he did not have money to compete with the Yankees of the world and assembled a [...]

  2. The pleasure of rooting for Goliath is that you can expect to win The pleasure of rooting for David is that, while you don t know what to expect, you stand at least a chance of being inspired This book came out in 2003, and the movie version came out in 2011 yet, it is amazing to me that despite the success shown by the Oakland As under the guidance of Billy Beane, baseball, for the most part, is still focusing on the wrong things Just recently the manager of the New York Mets, Terry Collins, wh [...]

  3. Having the misfortune of being a Kansas City Royals fan, I thought I d had any interest in baseball beaten out of me by season after season of humiliation Plus, the endless debate about the unfairness of large market vs small market baseball had made my eyes glaze over years ago so I didn t pay much attention to the Moneyball story until the movie came out last year and caught my interest enough to finally check this out.Despite being a small market team and outspent by tens of millions of dolla [...]

  4. This is a good book, but not as good as I thought it was going to be Sometimes I find technical writing to be a bit repetitive and this definitely leans toward technical non fiction than biography I was hoping for of a human interest story here because even though Billy Beane takes up a large chunk of the story, it isn t really a story about Billy Bean per se.Moneyball was published in 2003, only a year after John Henry bought the Boston Red Sox Before that time, very few people in baseball ha [...]

  5. It breaks your heart, A Bartlett Giamatti wrote of baseball in a piece called The Green Fields of the Mind It is designed to break your heart And so it does, year after year Baseball, as has often been noted, is a game predicated on failure The game s best hitters only succeed in roughly three out of ten at bats A 162 game season presents a tremendous sample size, which should iron out aberrations and yet year after year, entire seasons come down to a single bad bounce or mistimed swing or hangi [...]

  6. Michael Lewis hit this one out of the park I love his writing style he is able to explain complex and insider ideas to a layperson, and he makes it interesting That skill is as valuable to a reporter as a baseball player s on base percentage was to the Oakland Athletics.The story follows the Oakland A s during the 2002 baseball season, which was when their general manager, Billy Beane, was following a different set of principles for assembling a team than the majority of the league Beane and his [...]

  7. It was a better story before I knew the whole story Almost every book on randomness I have read had a reference to Moneyball and I had built up my own version about this story I had even told a few people that version and it imagined everybody doing what Billy Beane was doing, and Billy Beane doing some sort of probability distribution among all players and randomly picking his team, winning emphatically, and thus proving that a truly random pick of players is the equivalent of a true simulation [...]

  8. This is one of the best baseball books I have ever read, and that is saying something Lewis focus is on Billy Bean, the GM of the Oakland Athletics Because Oakland is a small market team, Bean must use his brain to tease out the players who can help his team, at a reasonable cost This makes him a sort of anti Steinbrenner Lewis goes into some detail on how Bean manages to field competitive teams almost every year under dire fiscal constraints Must read for any true baseball fan, and a source of [...]

  9. In honor of the MLB postseason, I am resurrecting a book review that I wrote back in 2009.I hardly know where to begin in attempting a review of Michael Lewis Moneyball The Art of Winning an Unfair Game It isn t that I don t think that the book is well written, because it is It isn t that I disagree with the conclusions that are reached in the book, because, for the most part, I don t What bothers me, as a recovering baseball fanatic, is that I don t enjoy the game that utilizes the approaches t [...]

  10. For the most part, the is a fun book to read about the general manager of the Oakland Athletics baseball team The first half of the book was very enjoyable Toward the end, though, it became a bit repetitive It s not that the author repeats himself he does not It s just that the stories about hiring and trading for good baseball players started to sound all the same after a while.Billy Beane was the general manager during the late 1980 s, early 1990 s His team was one of the poorest in the league [...]

  11. I read the book and then immediately watched the movie, and I can confirm that once again the book is better than its silver screen counterpart, even when its written by the legendary Aaron Sorkin.A little about why this book was important to me personally I am not a baseball fan, but I do work in professional sports, and specifically deal with analytics to now measure things which used to be very hand wavvy.This book can actually be a nail biter at times Don t get me wrong, it s still a lot of [...]

  12. A couple cons The writing s a little heavy handed in places, which might just be a hazard of writing about baseball Ex The batter s box was a cage designed to crush his spirit Plus, as a poet, I always feel guilty reading books like this when I could should be reading Proust or Shakespeare But Overall, I really enjoyedMoneyball, and I m glad I read it Even though it s focused on the emergence of new baseball thinking, Moneyballseems much comprehensive, and much narrative than I expected Essent [...]

  13. Moneyball is a book that shook the world of professional baseball, but not necessarily in the way it should have Let me explainMoneyball is framed around the story of Billy Beane, a hot prospect who never panned out in the majors, who became general manager of the Oakland A s in 1997 Since that time, the A s, while consistently having one of the lowest payrolls in baseball, have been one of the best teams in the game How is this possible The book details how Beane and a few trusted associates be [...]

  14. Really enjoyed this, partly because reading a baseball book in October when your team is in the playoffs gives you a great high and partly because I was surprisingly and honestly fascinated by the science of sabermetrics Science and math have never been my strong points, but like Jurassic Park or The Martian, I was nevertheless intrigued Coupled with the handful of recognizable players scattered through the book, I had a good time with this one I also remember seeing the film a few years ago got [...]

  15. I found this book extremely interesting, especially since I didn t read it until eight years after it came out, meaning I knew how all the draft picks and other players mentioned in the book panned out a topic on which a good deal has now been written Only my rule of always reading the book before seeing the movie prompted me pick it up now, a decision I don t regret.The book had some interesting tidbits I wasn t aware of, such as where the term sabremetrics came from The name derives from SABR, [...]

  16. I fucking hate watching sports Hate it.Then how is it that this book, about applying pertinent statistical analyis to creating baseball teams and playing basesball, so captivated me It s a testament to a the skill of the author, Michael Lewis, but also b the unequivocal appeal of the underlying story how hard it is to change the status quo and how one can succeed despite that and the man Lewis profiles, Billy Beane.A fantastic narrative for fans of spectator sports or folks like me who d rather [...]

  17. Boy did I read Michael Lewis Moneyball The Art of Winning an Unfair Game at the right time January The off season Over the last two years, I ve made a real effort to learn about sports Hockey Not a problem The NBA A gossipy league, but I think it s popular because of it The NFL Short but sweet No matter how hard I try I ll score the game, I ll eat the peanuts, but I draw the line at chew I just cannot develop an interest in baseball I recently talked to a former ESPN writer, and he told me that [...]

  18. If you re a baseball fan, you ll really appreciate this book It is or less a primer on the way the emphasis on statistics has come to prominence in many circles around the sport, and provides insight into some of the seemingly arcane terms around the sport, such as OBP, OPS, VORP, etc It s really quite valuable in that regard.It has also come to represent the term for the organizations that embrace this approach to scouting, although that assessment is not entirely accurate The book focuses on [...]

  19. I know next to nothing about baseball, and less than that about statistics, but this book about applying new statistical thinking in baseball to the selection of a winning team the Oakland A s was absolutely riveting reading for me Michael Lewis is just that good.

  20. A wee bit all over the place and rambling but than made up for by the fascinating subject matter.

  21. As a writer, Michael Lewis has that amazing ability to write about one thing but actually be writing about something else entirely Sometimes it s meanings within meanings, and it often requires a deeper read between the lines Moneyball The Art of Winning an Unfair Game is, ostensibly, about the economics of baseball, how baseball can be looked at as a financial microcosm of the real world the wealth inequalities between major league teams and how rich teams tend to win many games than poor team [...]

  22. The major taxing of this book is not the baseball terms, but there are so many people appeared in the book, and the similarities in names are not helping For example, the main protagonist is Billy Beane, and there is another important character whose name is Billy James That s my only concern when reading this book Some people maybe not comfortable with the writing style in this book, jumping from one subject to another without smooth main story.I am not a professional baseball fan although I en [...]

  23. Billy Beane raises his right hand up There are rich teams, there are poor teams, there is 50 feet of crap and then there is US reaches the table level Thirty pages into book I knew this book is going to be completely different from movie version only time to decide if it s engaging or uncompelling So I thought I would find a way to supply my patience fuel for another thirty pages or so, then I shall confidently decide on quitting or no because after all, this was not the story I fell in love wit [...]

  24. Well, its kind of about baseball Its really about Billy Beane and how terrific a GM he is and, as an extra bonus, he is so much like the swell guys on Wall Street who have it all figured out Well kinda You see, the Oakland Athletics were are a poor ballclub They do not have the cash of teams like the Yankees or Red Sox so they can not afford much in the way of scouting and even if they do scout they do not have the money to sign the best players actually I mean the players the rich team want, s [...]

  25. To most people, this book is about stats, how some stats are inadequate, and over, how important stats are ignored But that s not why I like this book The real story for me is how people with fewer means succeed It is than an undercurrent in the book, and it is sadly ignored by most readers The Oakland A s took baseball s detritus fat guys, skinny guys, short guys and composed championship caliber teams with them Moneyball to me isn t about the stats, it s about making the best of what you have [...]

  26. If you haven t already seen the movie, you ought to see the movie And after you have seen the movie, you ought to read the book I loved the film adaptation, it adds magic and melancholy to the story This book stands out to me not because it s a good underdog story though it is a very good underdog story , and not because it s a good non fiction story and it is a very good non fiction story , but because of the symbolic power and universality of its core message there is unseen value in every hum [...]

  27. Simultaneously among the top 10 sports books and the top 10 economics books Without Lewis s typical Princetonian smugness.

  28. The inside story of the unlikely success of the Oakland Athletics 2002 team at the hands of General Manager Billy Beane and his unconventional talent evaluation methodology that enabled him to field a division winning team at bargain basement salaries The history of baseball statistics and analysis was actually pretty interesting I m no mathlete but the theory behind it was thought provoking Success on the field is sometimes calculated and ascribed a value that has just as much to do with circum [...]

  29. This was a fun read for those baseball fans that are bewildered by how baseball teams build and manage said teams My husband enjoys watching the Oakland A s, which is the subject of this book but like other Lewis works, this one is about the culture and industry than just the this one team I honestly wished other team managers owners see the value in at least some of the ideas of Billy Beane and apply them to their own teams cough NY Yankees cough yeah, maybe we could have avoided the problem t [...]

  30. If you re a baseball fan, this is a must read It s entertaining, well written, and optimistic In 2017, the Los Angeles Dodgers had baseball s highest team payroll at 265 million while the Milwaukee Brewers had baseball s lowest team payroll at 83 million In 2002, the spending gap was just as pronounced This is a story about the Oakland A s, whose 2002 team salary was the lowest in baseball and their use of statistics or sabermetrics to compete in a game where the richest teams can simply outbid [...]

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