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eastchicagosoxfan
01-07-2007, 07:22 AM
Bill James is:

caulfield12
01-07-2007, 09:08 AM
How about a poor writer who does know something about baseball, but not as much as he thinks and pontificates?

ondafarm
01-07-2007, 10:24 AM
I've actually had a conversation with Bill James. First and foremost, he is a baseball fan. Apart from that, he's a smart guy who attempts to apply the tools he does know well, statistics, to his love, baseball. I don't agree with all of ideas but that's fine, what I do appreciate is very well done.

ondafarm
01-07-2007, 10:24 AM
I'm presuming you mean "statistical".

eastchicagosoxfan
01-07-2007, 10:27 AM
I'm presuming you mean "statistical".

Exactly. I didn't see the spellcheck option for polls. I'll try to change it.

eastchicagosoxfan
01-07-2007, 10:33 AM
I like Bill James, and I know that opinions of him run the gamut. I enjoy his writing, and I find his arguments well thought out, and his research is thourough. I think James is a lot of fun, and good for the game.

Daver
01-07-2007, 11:23 AM
Bill James is:

A propellerhead.

TommyJohn
01-07-2007, 11:39 AM
An idiot.

Anyone who equates people who support Shoeless Joe Jackson for the Hall
of Fame with "people who line up in the courtroom to catch a glimpse of the
cute murderer" is seriously whacked. And I DO NOT support Jackson for the
Hall of Fame.

SouthSide_HitMen
01-07-2007, 01:33 PM
He has written independently since the 1970s and several of his books are excellent. His Historical Abstract (http://www.amazon.com/Bill-James-Historical-Baseball-Abstract/dp/0743227220) is a must read for all baseball fans.

I get his annual handbook as well. He doesn't write as much since he was hired by the Red Sox in 2003 which is a shame.

Brian26
01-07-2007, 01:55 PM
Whether or not you agree with James, you have to give him credit for what he's accomplished.

He was a baseball fan without any connections in the game. He started writing an underground newsletter, developed a mailing list with a crop of loyal readers, and eventually scraped together enough money to take out a monthly ad in the Sporting News for one of his first annuals (which wasn't even a fancy hardbound book at the time, but just a stapled together pamphlet). From all of this, he became a best-selling author and was actually hired by a major league baseball team. I think that's a great story.

FedEx227
01-07-2007, 05:14 PM
I love Bill James' stuff. I get the Handbook every single year and love reading through it, a lot of people will immediately say hes a propellerhead/stat-head, when in actuality most of his stat gathering deals with very basic numbers.

Take the managerial records where he measures their "Slow Hooks" vs. "Long Hooks". Plus he has less of this "my way or the highway" attitude that the BP guys have. Even his Composite ERA is a very simple formula along with the Pythagorean Records

A. Cavatica
01-07-2007, 07:00 PM
Daver, how about a propellerhead who's actually had many good insights?

Surely you can't dismiss James completely...unless you never read the original Baseball Abstracts.

Daver
01-07-2007, 07:24 PM
Daver, how about a propellerhead who's actually had many good insights?

Surely you can't dismiss James completely...unless you never read the original Baseball Abstracts.

I don't dismiss him completely, don't put words in my mouth.

He's still a propellerhead.

FedEx227
01-07-2007, 09:07 PM
Just curious, what have you actually read of his?

jabrch
01-07-2007, 10:06 PM
I don't dismiss him completely, don't put words in my mouth.

He's still a propellerhead.

Why do propellerheads seem to take so much umbrage to the use of that term Daver? It shouldn't be an insult.

tacosalbarojas
01-10-2007, 02:02 PM
Whether or not you agree with James, you have to give him credit for what he's accomplished.

He was a baseball fan without any connections in the game. He started writing an underground newsletter, developed a mailing list with a crop of loyal readers, and eventually scraped together enough money to take out a monthly ad in the Sporting News for one of his first annuals (which wasn't even a fancy hardbound book at the time, but just a stapled together pamphlet). From all of this, he became a best-selling author and was actually hired by a major league baseball team. I think that's a great story.True. His earliest exposure may have come via a Roger Angell article that was written at the height of the KC Royals '70s empire when Rodg watched some games and took running commentary from some fans of the long-suffering but then playoff-bound Royals, one of whom was Bill James.

Jurr
01-11-2007, 08:23 AM
I have the Bill James book from 2002, I believe. I do enjoy the all time lists he puts together. The overload of stats (win shares, etc.) is a little over the top, but it's entertaining.

For that stuff to be used in any sort of scouting context is a little odd.