From the category archives:

Baseball Statistical Theory

Note: Just like Chuck Lorre’s “vanity cards” at the end of The Big Bang Theory, you should read these list stories to their conclusion; the end is always changing, even though the theme is basically the same, finishing up with a self-promotional message. On with the show… Here are the top ten baseball books as […]

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If you can remember the old Saturday Night Live skit — a take-off on 60 Minutes‘ “Point/Counterpoint” segment between conservative James J. Kilptarick and Shana Shana Alexander representing the liberal POV — you might be old enough to get where Boston Globe sports columnist Bob Ryan is coming from when he asks “Do baseball fans […]

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Back to school

April 23, 2014 · 0 comments

I’m getting ready for this. It will be interesting to see how complex/simple the on-line course is. Too simple can turn off those who already have a good background in the game and its myriad statistical components. Too difficult, and you turn off everyone. See you in class.

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Nate Silver recently began his 538.com site under the aegis of ESPN. One would hope that he and his minions will produce a lot of smart sports (i.e., baseball) stuff. Obviously a site dedicated to projections and predictions has a lot of math to it. Ugh.But you have to take the “bad” with the good. […]

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This it the time of year when the baseball media offer their considered opinions on their favorite prospects. Sometimes they’re spot on, other times, not so much. So I thought, why not apply this to the upcoming “rookie crop” of baseball books? That is, titles that are making their debuts in 2014 — no reprints/reissues […]

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There was a self-help book that came out awhile back called Eat the Frog. Don’t know where it came from since I never read this type of literature (not that there’s anything wrong with it). The premise is, you get the tough stuff out of the way first and the rest is easy-peasy. I guess […]

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Apropos to a previous entry about poor prognostications, the Las Vegas odds-makers wasted no time in declaring their 2014 World Series favorite: the Los Angeles Dodgers. Call me next October.

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I’m a big fan of audio books. I recently borrowed two titles from the library — The Drunkard’s Walk: How Randomness Rules Our Lives, by Mlodinow, Leonard, and 1861: The Civil War Awakening, by Adam Goodheart — that would seem to have nothing to do with the national pastime. But lo and behold the former […]

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Bits and pieces, Dec. 18

December 18, 2012 · 0 comments

501 update:  Received the index back for a bit of very minor revising. Then it’s really done. Gratified by the very early interest by members of the media in doing reviews. Bruce Markusen over at The Hardball Times offers another in his series of “baseball card mysteries.” This time it’s Dave Nelson’s 1973  Topps. Speaking […]

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Review roundup, Nov. 26

November 26, 2012 · 0 comments

Used to be you had to wait until at least February for the first whiff of baseball lit to be available. Not any more. The Hardball Times Annual and The Bill James Handbook are already out an about. Herewith a few reviews: The Handbook, by SB Nation, ESPN’s Sweet Spot. HBT: Not so much a […]

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Nate Silver can return to more important work.

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Ok, hurication is over. Time to get back to some semblance of normalcy. I hope y’all are okay out there. We came out unscathed save for a couple of days without power; presently we have no cable/Internet service, but no complaints given what so many others are going through. Before the power went out we […]

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Will Leitch published this piece on the reluctance of some sports pundits (as opposed to the hoi poloi of fandom) who are reluctant to embrace the new generation of baseball statistics. Of course this is the time of year when segments of the media that doesn’t normally cover baseball starts up as if they invented […]

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Conducted my semi-regular scan of new titles. Submitted for your interest. It may seem unfair, but I do tend to judge e-books by their cover, especially when they are offered only in that format. It’s an indication of the time and effort the author/publisher puts into the project. Similarly, I’m basing my opinions strictly on […]

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* Baseball Prospectus is adding a mid-season “addenda” to its annual publication: The Call Up 2012. Here are a couple of review, the first from SouthsideShowdown, the second from ValueOverReplacementGrit. My question is: why is a book like this necessary? Those interested in such information would probably find it easier to get the most recent […]

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Weekend reading

May 18, 2012 · 0 comments

One of the “problems” working on my book is that I haven’t had as much time to read other books. Several authors have been kind enough to send me their work and I apologize for be so slow to get to them and hope to remedy that in the near future. At the moment, I’m […]

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♦ I don’t usually look at e-books if they haven’t been published on paper as well, but David H. Martinez (The Book of Baseball Literacy: 3rd Edition: Nearly 700 People, Places, Events, Teams, Stats, and Stories – Everything You Need to Know in One Massive Book) has enough of a track record for me to […]

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♦ Tom Hoffarth’s latest 30/30: Extra Innings: More Baseball Between the Numbers from the Team at Baseball Prospectus, edited by Steven Goldman, editor-in-chief of BaseballProspectus.com. Upshot: “The top-qualify writing, and heavy-duty thinking, you’ve come to expect from the Prospectus staff is worthy of this heavy-duty bounded hardback (no more paperbacks this time around). The stuff […]

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  Matt Kemp has had a wonderful start: Six home runs in the Dodgers’ first 10 games, as well as 16 RBIs, and a BA/OBP/SLG line of .487/.523/1.026. But someone has to be a bit more ambitious, or at least less lazy. ESPN projects a player’s end-of-season/162 game stats based purely on what he has […]

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♦ Bill Jordan at Baseball Reflections on Tim Wendel’s Summer of 68. ♦ Tom Hoffarth kicked off his annual “30 book in 30 days” feature yesterday with Baseball Prospectus 2012. Today’s book is Trading Manny: How a Father & Son Learned to Love Baseball Again, by Jim Gullo. (Here’s another review from The Oregonian.) ♦ Sticking […]

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