The Art of Winning An Unfair Game

Book - 2004
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Moneyball is a quest for the secret of success in baseball. In a narrative full of fabulous characters and brilliant excursions into the unexpected, Michael Lewis follows the low-budget Oakland A's, visionary general manager Billy Beane, and the strange brotherhood of amateur baseball theorists. They are all in search of new baseball knowledge--insights that will give the little guy who is willing to discard old wisdom the edge over big money.
Publisher: New York : W.W. Norton, 2004.
ISBN: 9780393324815
Branch Call Number: 796.3570691 LEW
Characteristics: xv, 317 pages ; 21 cm
Alternative Title: Art of winning an unfair game


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Mar 08, 2018

I thoroughly enjoyed Michael Lewis’s book Moneyball as it was a very interesting look into the world of professional baseball and the strategy behind creating successful baseball teams. Michael Lewis’s characters are also well developed and the underdog team of The Oakland A’s he describes in the book is very easy to root for. As a result the book is gripping throughout as one really wants the underdog team with a brilliant analytical strategy to be able to overcome the sheer economic power of the more established teams. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in either sports or math.
- @CookieMonster of The Hamilton Public Library's Teen Review Board

nrowlands Dec 07, 2016

Michael Lewis' classic story of the man and organization that revolutionized baseball.

bibliotechnocrat Aug 29, 2016

Michael Lewis knocks it over the fence. Even though I'm not a fan of baseball, I found his descriptions of the arcane (and rather insane) practices of selecting potential players, and evaluating existing ones, to be interesting and amusing. Lewis writes well and presents a pretty powerful argument for evidence-based decision making. The personal story of Billy Beane (played by Brad Pitt in the film) works well to shape the narrative, so it's not all baseball stats and oddities. I think The Blind Side might have been a bit better, but I really liked them both. Mr. Lewis, you have a new fan.

Nov 24, 2014

Excellent book. When the movie came out, I was not surprised that critics said it was not as good as the book.

Michael Lewis is a very good writer. In addition to Moneyball, I especially recommend his books Liar's Poker, and The Big Short.

Brandon97_ Jul 06, 2014

Moneyball explains why the Oakland A's, with a ridiculously low budget, was able to defeat other richer franchises by exploiting inefficiencies in the market. General manager Billy Beane and his assistant Paul DePodesta find undervalued baseball players to build a winning franchise. This was made possible through the introduction of Sabermetrics, the study of baseball statistics. A wonderful read, better with background baseball knowledge.

Jun 26, 2014

I found that having some baseball knowledge was useful and made the book more exciting to read.

May 04, 2014

Only an excessive drift between narrative and technical information drop my rating into one a full point higher.

The storytelling is marvellous, and makes me want to see the movie based upon the book again.

Dec 14, 2012

The author seeks to explain the previous success of Billy Beane's penny-pinching Oakland A's and how his success may continue when several key players depart for more financially beneficial pastures. With topics ranging from the creation of sabremetrics, behind the scenes looks at MLB, moral questions about the importance of money in relation to success, and Billy Beane recovering from the greatest mistake of his life, this book delivers the author's goal and so much more.

Aug 28, 2012

While there is a common misconception that this is a book by Billy Beane about his life, it is not. Instead it is about the struggle to find and implement new knowledge in a field where many have written off the notion. I guess Billy Beane was the only (amongst GM) who was willing to really dedicate himself to a this new system and so the book is very focused on him as a result.

Mar 16, 2012

This book is an insight into how in the Oakland A's, having comparably very little money to spend on their team in the early 2000's, ended up winning so many games. Baseball's financial inequality between the richest and poorest teams is the most disparate of all the major sports, and a team like the New York Yankees can use their sizable war chest of funds to purchase the best team possible. The Oakland A's, not having a hundred million to spend, needs to be more resourceful.

The A's general manager, Billy Beane, was purportedly the first to implement at the pro level a system of management derived almost entirely from statistical analysis alone. This appears to have begun out of financial necessity and eventually grew into a very efficient and somewhat controversial method for success.

The statistical analysis in Moneyball is putting to use the ongoing discussion going back for decades on how to break down the different outcomes of a play and assign them values. In theory, figure out which actions in a game produce the highest outcome towards the intended goal (wins) and focus on those the most.

The novel's charm, apart from its savvy business edge, is how Billy Beane's team uncovers the true talents of otherwise unknown college and minor league players.

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Brandon97_ Jul 06, 2014

Brandon97_ thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over


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Brandon97_ Jul 06, 2014

"The pleasure of rooting for Goliath is that you can expect to win. The pleasure of rooting for David is that, while you don’t know what to expect, you stand at least a chance of being inspired."


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