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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 © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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.
This book may indeed become a movie (let Jim Carrey and Johnny Depp star). Many of those written about here are literary--such as Trace Wood (whose interests run to James Joyce), and such as pitcher Miguel Batista, poet and author of a detective novel to be published in the spring. I was inspired by this book to try my own hand at Rotisserie Baseball and put some of the inexpensive players in here on my team. Last night, Batista and the Diamondbacks beat Colorado and as I type this he leads the majors in strikeouts.
People who loved this book and Michael Lewis's MONEYBALL might also try CURVE BALL: BASEBALL, STATISTICS, AND THE ROLE OF CHANCE IN THE GAME by Jim Albert and Jay Bennett.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Worth your time and money. Enjoy.