From Redleg Nation :
This morning, I happened to catch Larry Bowa on XM Radio™s baseball channel. Bowa took off on the most uneducated, moronic rant I™ve ever heard.
The subject of his rant: Bill James and œMoneyball. It was pathetic. Bowa kept saying, œI™m a winner, I know how to win. Bill James knows nothing about baseball. Ultimately, it devolved into œBill James never wore a uniform. I played. I know what it takes to win. Second grade nonsense.
His harshest rhetoric was reserved for œMoneyball, though. He went on and on and on about the book, all the while saying stupid things like, œDoes Moneyball tell you how to move a runner over? Does Moneyball tell you how to give up yourself at the plate?
In the end, we heard the clincher: Bowa has never read Moneyball, he™s never going to read it, but œsome people have told him what it™s about.
I heard the same broadcast while driving to the airport earlier today. Larry’s flustered caller (who started the whole thing by suggesting maybe he should read the book before passing judgement) asked Larry “who told you about it, Joe Morgan?”
“I’ve never spoken to Joe Morgan about ‘Moneyball’!”, exclaimed Bowa. “But let me tell you….Joe Morgan is an astute baseball mind. If he has a problem with it, that should tell you something.”
When the argument was presented to Larry that “Moneyball” was less a dogma and had more to do with a poor club (in this case, Oakland) identifying certain characteristics / market inefficiencies, Bowa wanted to know why Oakland aren’t winning now. “How do the Twins do it? By scouting. I can guarantee you none of the guys they’ve signed were because of ‘Moneyball’”
“Let’s just break out the laptops and have a look at the stats. We won’t watch anyone play. We won’t even bother with spring training. We’ll just start the season in Chicago or Los Angeles or wherever.”
There were some other remarks about chat rooms and “fantasies” but I think you get the general idea.
Anyhow, it was (as always) a revelation to learn that Bill James authored “Moneyball”, just as it was to know that as far as Bowa is concerned, James has zilch to offer because he once advocated “closer by commitee”.