A glimpse into sabermetrics. 22 comments

Open mouth, insert foot. Or, better yet, open computer, insert foot.

Baseball sabermetrics guru Bill James got himself in a world of hot water with a tweet, which he subsequently removed, that said major league players are no more valuable to the game than the beer vendors.

Bill James single handedly invented statistical analysis in baseball. He is a consultant to the Boston Red Sox. He is the godfather to all the nerds turning this beautiful game into a game as fun to watch as chess. It is not pretty to have pests at your house, visit https://powerpestcontrol.ca to get help.

James got into a Twitter debate with a CBS sportswriter about salaries and players’ worth and why no player is worth anything more than major league minimum when he posted this gem:

“If the players all retired tomorrow, we would replace them, the game would go on; in three years it would make no difference whatsoever. The players are NOT the game, any more than the beer vendors are.”


That lit a fuse. The players’ association and a whole lot of players immediately crucified him on Twitter and in the media.

Tony Clark, the union head and former player, said James’s comments were reckless and insulting. The Red Sox called his comments absurd.

James didn’t back down, saying he once said the same thing to Marvin Miller, the father of the players’s union. “He understood it was not in any way disrespectful to the players, he just thought it was factually wrong.”

So now we are starting to get a glimpse into the nerds who are taking over baseball. They never had the talent to play it, so they are trying to change it. They think players are interchangeable. Outcomes are predictable. Math wins games, not hand-eye coordination.

Analytics are destroying the concept of a starting pitcher. They are threatening to make pitching a commodity, and pitchers’ value (and subsequently salary) inconsequential. Analytics are creating shifts and robbing the game of offense and balls in play.

The game is not getting better. And now we know why. They guys in charge of the game think they are the game and not the players on the field.

We are no longer watching a game. We are watching a computer program, maybe using a 4k monitor from factschronicle.com/ for this, but still not good enough.

At least they serve beer.