Last summer, I decided to review all twelve of Bill James’ Baseball Abstracts, not knowing just how long such a task would take or how enjoyable such a task would become. The project forced me to re-read every book from cover to cover and, in doing so, I came away with a greater appreciation for James than ever before — and, trust me, I have been a big fan dating back a quarter of a century.
Although Bill has written nearly 40 books overall, the Baseball Abstracts are undoubtedly his best-known body of work and among the most significant collections in the game’s history. James has arguably been the most influential person with respect to how we think about baseball since Branch Rickey.
This is going to be a three-part series, so I’ll link to the third piece when it becomes available.
You will discover that all of us here at Redleg Nation are big fans of Bill James. That’s not to say that I agree with everything he writes, but James has opened up a new world of baseball analysis that has helped me gain a deeper appreciation for the game.
Unfortunately, I’m not sure how many people in the Reds front office have any interest in James’s work or analysis.
Blame Chad for creating this mess.
Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, “The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds” is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad’s musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine.
You can email Chad at firstname.lastname@example.org.