A Billy Beane for Basketball?

According to this article in Wired, a man named Dean Oliver is trying to do for basketball what Bill James and Billy Beane did for baseball: create and exploit new metrics in order to better distinguish players who win from those who simply generate gaudy traditional stats. The Wired article is written by Hugo Lindgren, […]


I guess there won’t be a sequel to Moneyball written about Paul DePodesta and the Los Angeles Dodgers. After a 71-91 season, DePodesta was abruptly fired this week. Diehard readers of this blog know that I have been a longtime skeptic of the stories in Moneyball (see, for example, here, here, and here). There is, […]

The Oakland A’s are three games above .500

To all the Billy Beane fans I offended earlier this season: I have noticed that the A’s are now three games above .500. I’m too busy with other stuff to even try to say something intelligent about baseball right now. Plus my fragile psyche can’t take anymore of the kind of abuse that baseball fans […]

Are Billy Beane Believers still expecting 97 wins this year?

What do the 100+ angry baseball fans who have posted livid responses to my earlier postings about Billy Beane have to say about the new data that has been assembled since I made my first claims? The A’s record is now 14-20. The chances of a team that wins 60 percent of their games going […]

Will the Real Billy Beane Please Stand Up!?

Whenever I post on baseball, people get very agitated. So I figured it was time to ruffle a few more feathers. My contention is that the secret to Oakland’s success has little to do with the things described in Moneyball, such as the emphasis on finding the skills in baseball that are good at producing […]

Let’s at least argue about Moneyball using data

I do not deny that the Oakland As record in the past is amazing. People seem to be missing this point. What I am arguing is that they were not successful for the reasons that were most prominently trotted out in Moneyball, namely the ability to find good offensive players cheap. I think it is […]

Billy Beane redux

My comments on Billy Beane have a lot of people upset, as usual. So you tell me. If the Oakland A’s win 80 games a year for the next five years, would those who think Billy Beane should be the next pope still hold that opinion? (BTW, I see Beane is a real long shot […]

Finally, convincing evidence of Billy Beane’s genius

It seems like just about everyone thinks Billy Beane is a genius, thanks to the Michael Lewis book Moneyball, which details the way in which his Oakland A’s use statistics in innovative ways to choose talent and win games. I’ve never been part of the Billy Beane cult. For instance, in a January 2004 Financial […]