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Fantasyland: A Sportswriter's Obsessive Bid to Win the World's Most Ruthless Fantasy Baseball Paperback – February 27, 2007
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Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Since the publication of Michael Lewis's MONEYBALL, various baseball executives have taken this philosophy to heart, and this book takes a sample season to show how the numbers are applied variously by the FANTASY BASEBALL experts, several of whom are employed to consult big league baseball clubs.
Sam Walker, baseball columnist for the Wall Street Journal, hired a numbers cruncher on the one side, and a traditional inside scout on the other, and he set about trying to win the TOUT WARS Rotisserie Baseball League, which included some of the nation's top "experts," lawyers, engineers, scholars, zen masters, data crunchers. Walker even hires an astrologer, just to see what she'd say (and whose baseball predictions he found "remarkably accurate").
The efficiency expert's baseball philosophy "is that human perceptions are, for the most part, garbage. When humans watch a baseball game, they give too much weight to first impressions, recent events, and unusual occurrences. They make causal connections when they don't exist, rely too heavily on existing theories, and give too much weight to evidence that confirms them."
"All human observers, the scouts included, are sort of like drunks in a bar brawl: their abilities are severely limited, but the more they indulge, the more confident they become."
But the trouble with numbers is that they do not measure everything and hence they also often lead management astray. Which of course is exactly what happens in the book, and it is a highly humorous ride, full of baseball lore and with many surprises.Read more ›
"Fantasyland: A Season on Baseball's Lunatic Fringe" is a book detailing Wall Street Journal columnist Sam Walker's wild initiation into fantasy baseball. Instead of signing up for his work league, he decided to go all out and join one of the most prestigious expert leagues around, Tout Wars, which was started by Baseball Forecaster author Ron Shandler.
This was the funnest baseball book I've read in a while and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Walker pokes fun at his adversaries and himself throughout the book and he even hires a staff to help him out, including a person who specializes in the astrological evaluation of ball players. The chapter on the auction draft is priceless, and Walker pulls out every trick in the book to try to get a leg up on his opponents.
Along with being a fun story on his experiences in the league, the book is also about his struggle between objective analysis and statistical analysis. He did his own spring training scouting, but he also hired a statistician to help him evaluate players using advanced statistics. His media access to the players also makes for some interesting side stories.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book has very interesting anecdotes but they're dated so I don't find it especially helpful in terms of fantasy strategy. Read morePublished 6 months ago by J.A. Torres
Great book. Couldn't put it down since I got it and read in a couple of days. Sam is a very conversational, engaging writer. Read morePublished 10 months ago by John
The author takes on the task of competing in a professional hard-core league of fantasy baseball where folks pick teams of ballplayers to compete against teams of other people's... Read morePublished 14 months ago by ellison
Mr. Walker's book is well written and unapologetic about what it seeks to convey, while at the same time somewhat blind to the underlying truth of its premise. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Kindle Customer
This was a hit as a birthday present for my hard to buy for brother.Published 16 months ago by Marci Stahl
Funny, well written, and well balanced experience between some fantasy history and Walker's own experience.
Worth your time and money. Enjoy.
Book is in great condition and a great read! A must read to learn the roots of rotisseree baseball for the fantasy geeks out there.Published 23 months ago by Steven Hoskins
Some body at work saw me with a copy of Sam Walkers's book "Fantasyland." They asked "Is that a baseball book?" "Yes" I replied. But is that what its really about? Read morePublished on May 28, 2013 by Scott W. Talbert