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Baseball Prospectus 2012 Paperback – February 1, 2012

4.1 out of 5 stars 34 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

The 2012 Edition of the New York Times bestselling guide

"The Best Book Of Its Kind."
Rob Neyer

Now in its seventeenth edition, the Baseball Prospectus annual shows once again how it became the industry leader: the 2012 edition includes key stat categories, more controversial player predictions, and the kind of wise, witty baseball commentary that makes this phone-book-thick tome worth reading cover to cover.

Baseball Prospectus 2012 provides fantasy players and insiders alike with uncannily prescient PECOTA projections, which Sports Illustrated has called "perhaps the game's most accurate projection model." Still, stats are just numbers if you don't see the larger context, and Baseball Prospectus brings together an elite team of analysts to provide the definitive look at all thirty teams—their players, their prospects, and their managers—to explain away flukes, hot streaks, injury-tainted numbers, park effects, and overrated prospects who won't be able to fool people in the Show like they have down on the farm.

Nearly every Major League team has sought the advice of current or former Prospectus writers, and readers of Baseball Prospectus 2012 will understand what all those fans have been raving about.

"If you're a baseball fan and you don't know what BP is, you're working in a mine without one of those helmets with the lights on it."
Keith Olbermann

"For me, every year baseball begins with the big, brilliant, beautiful book you are holding in your hands right now."
Joe Posnanski

"Baseball Prospectus continues to raise the bar for innovative baseball analysis every year."
Mark Shapiro, President, Cleveland Indians

"If a general manager hasn't read Baseball Prospectus, he should be fired for incompetence."
Michael Lewis, author of Moneyball

Baseball Prospectus 2011 correctly predicted:

  • The collapse of 2010 stars Vernon Wells, Trevor Cahill, and Austin Jackson, as well as serious regression for Josh Hamilton and Ubaldo Jimenez

  • Strong comebacks for Pablo Sandoval and Carlos Beltran, as well as Dan Haren's strong finish with the Angels being a better indicator of 2011 performance than his pre-trade struggles with the D-Backs

  • Breakout seasons from Michael Pineda, Desmond Jennings, Danny Espinosa, Craig Kimbrel, and Jeremy Hellickson

  • That Albert Pujols plus the Cardinals' starting rotation would still be a recipe for success

  • That the Diamondbacks had a much brighter immediate future than the typical last-place club

  • That Dave Dombrowski's roster restructuring in Detroit would lead the Tigers back into contention

About the Author

Baseball Prospectus is America's leading provider of statistical analysis for baseball, combining entertaining commentary and accurate forecasting via books, blogs, articles, and a website.

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Product Details

  • Series: Baseball Prospectus
  • Paperback: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 3 edition (February 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470622075
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470622070
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 1.4 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #948,297 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great read for any baseball fan but a MUST READ for the fantasy baseball player.

1. The players are ordered by teams with hitters first followed by pitchers in alphabetical order. There's a great index by name as well. The front matter talks in great detail about the statistics used in the text, explaining the analytic approach in excrutiating but fun detail.

2. Each team has a few pages of sumnmary discussion followed by player stats/descriptions. The player stats are presented for the prior 3 years and they include projections for the 2012 season.

3. The best part: the analysts provide a text summary of the player in plain English terms -- the comments can be sarcastic, funny, biting, and even hilarious. I often quote from the book at my baseball draft auction. The Manny Ramirez quote, for example, "Everyone's favorite idiot showed a new level of stupidity by violating baseball's performance-enhancing drug policy for the second time. Manny's bay area retreat lasted only slightly longer than the Bay of Pigs invasion in Cuba as Ramirez retired rather than sit out 100 games...." Great stuff.

Buy this book. Now.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
At the outset of each baseball season, I like to pick up several volumes--the Bill James annual work and this volume, among others. And the 2012 edition does not disappoint.

The purpose of this book (Page ix): "Baseball Prospectus 2012, like its predecessors, is an attempt to make sense of the chaos, not just the sometimes tragic chaos of those cold months, but also the wonderful bedlam that makes up any baseball season any summer, and more importantly, what it means for the coming season and beyond." This work begins with a discussion of statistics--both on offense and defense and pitching. On offense, the "True Average" is a key metric. Note that a TAv of .260 is average, .300 exceptional, and .200 awful (TAv is a conglomerate measure including power, walking, striking out, and making "productive outs"). Then, there is PECOTA--projections for the coming season.

Let's take a look at the Chicago Cubs. Their best offensive player, by the PECOTA score, should be Geovany Soto. The Chicago White Sox? Paul Konerko has the highest projected true average--.297. One element in the player descriptions is the analogous players to the one named. Konerko's doppelgangers? Stan Musial, Kevin Mitchell, and Rafael Palmeiro. Not bad company! The most intriguing projection? Adam Dunn, after a disastrous 2011 season, is projected to have a TAv of .292. We shall see! And we see projections and actual records on a team by team basis, from the Arizona Diamondbacks to the Washington Nationals.

Other features--the top 101 prospects for the major leagues (Matt Moore, pitcher for the Rays) comes in as the number 1 prospect; the PECOTA leaderboard.

Another baseball season has begun! And this work helps make that a little bit more enjoyable.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this for my father who greatly enjoys fantasy baseball. Since I graduated school and found a job, instead of buying him the book a year late and paying 99 cents and letting him look up the recent data online, I was able to buy the new edition this year - This book is worth every penny for a real baseball statistics fanatic.

It provides several years' worth of stats, as well as projections and comparisons to other players. I wish it had a better guide to what each statistic meant; we had to look up a sort of glossary for that online and make an addendum in a binder for Dad's extra fantasy baseball information. The book is so complete and thorough in terms of information about the players, once we understood what each stat was, it really cut back on the amount of time he spends researching on various sites to build his time, and he's been able to better focus on actually putting together teams.

Every baseball team has a team synopsis written out with projections for the year before discussing the players of that team, and there's very useful information that's easy to read. There's also enough room in the margins to make notes.

He's purchased other baseball stat books in the past, but nothing really compares to BP. The only real complaint I heard from him regarding the book was the silly nature of the introduction; I guess they're trying to be coy and market it to young people. Of course, it's easy enough to skip that part. If anyone could recommend an equally good pro football guide, please comment!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Along with the BA Prospect Handbook, this is a title that I start waiting anxiously for sometime in early January. And as usual, the great baseball minds at BP have not disappointed, providing a guide for the upcoming season that should be within arm's reach all year for any baseball fan.

I think many of us have enjoyed the sharp humor of the player comments, and that remains on display in this latest edition. One thing I've noticed over the past few editions is that they've become a little more confident in these predictions, and you can see that confidence in the 2012 edition. The wit is still in evidence, too, and it's good to see that the writers still aren't taking themselves too seriously. The statistics are similar to previous editions, and there's some fun to be had in comparing the PECOTA leaders from 2011 to the projections made in last year's edition. For those who are new to some of the stats that BP holds near and dear, there's a nicely written introduction that helps explain what they mean and why they're important.

My only wish (I wouldn't call it a complaint) is that I'd like to see more essays and analysis, but that's likely to remain true no matter how much they include. And I should also mention that this year's edition does a far better job than past years in both layout and editing. Gone are some of the previous problems with formatting, and there are far few editing errors.

Five stars is a no-brainer for this one. Great for fantasy players, for hardcore baseball fans, and for those just trying to gain a greater understanding of the game.
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