Is Cheating Good for Sports?

That was the question I found myself asking while reading through the Times sports section in recent days. I understand that we are sort of between seasons here. The Super Bowl is over, baseball has yet to begin, the N.B.A. is slogging through its long wintry slog, and the N.H.L. — well, I’m afraid I […]

More On Roger Clemens

Last week, Justin Wolfers offered an insightful analysis of Roger Clemens‘s career statistics and what those statistics imply about the likelihood that Clemens used steroids. The latest contribution to this debate is by sabermetric legend Nate Silver of Baseball Prospectus. Using only data through 1997, Nate generates a projection of what Clemens‘s stats should have […]

Analyzing Roger Clemens: A Step-by-Step Guide

Yesterday, I posted about the conclusions that Eric Bradlow, Shane Jensen, Adi Wyner, and I drew from analyzing Roger Clemens‘s career statistics. I thought that it might be useful to show how we got from the findings in the Clemens Report (exonerating him), to our somewhat opposite conclusions. So for budding forensic economists, here is […]

Breaking Down the Clemens Report: A Guest Post

Sports fans will probably be aware that Roger Clemens is currently before Congress, arguing that the Mitchell Report wrongly tagged him as having used performance-enhancing drugs. And last week, his agents released the “Clemens Report,” arguing that his career statistics somehow exonerate him. The full marketing spin is available here. I was interested in understanding […]

Is Today Mark McGwire’s Best Day in Years?

Former U.S. Senator George Mitchell today released his long-anticipated report on steroid use in baseball. It charges many star players with having used steroids, including Roger Clemens, Barry Bonds, and Mark McGwire. Here’s one thing about the report that really jumped out at me, as portrayed by Michael Schmidt and Duff Wilson in the Times‘s […]

How ‘Talented’ Is This Kid?

A while ago, we wrote a New York Times Magazine column about talent — what it is, how it’s acquired, etc. The gist of the column was that “raw talent,” as it’s often called, is vastly overrated, and that people who become very good at something, whether it’s sports, music, or medicine, generally do so […]