* It's not easy being green…or red

March 23, 2009

More on the decision by MLB to cease the printed publication of the Red and Green Books. Murray Chass wrote about this awhile ago, and sure enough, it’s become a generational thing.

David Appelman of FanGraphs.com:

… as a younger person who uses the Internet (and sometimes even writes about baseball), I actually do have a Green book from the 1970’s lying around somewhere which I purchased off ebay a few years ago. I can’t find it. It probably ended up in storage when I moved, but I recall there may be some interesting team record stats in it.

If anyone has one of these on hand I’d be interested in hearing from you if there is anything worthwhile in these books which can’t be found easily on the Internet.

Most of the comments seem to be a mass denunciation of Chass’ comments that:

Younger writers, more attuned to the use of the Internet than their older colleagues, may not have a problem with the disappearance of the books. But in past years they didn’t have the Internet as an alternative reference site. They apparently just didn’t feel the need for any information the books provided.

That says more about them than it does about baseball’s decision.

Any generalization can’t be a good thing, but I’d rather seem the comments address the book issue. I’m not as old as Chass, but neither am I as young as most of these folk, so I can see the argument from both sides. Maybe “today’s generation” is born with an internet connection (ooh, an idea for a sci-fi story), but I’m not on-line 24/7 and it may be old-fashioned, but I enjoy the feel of the page, rather than staring at a screen…as I am right now.

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