Mind Game: How the Boston Red Sox Got Smart and Finally Won a World Series

Mind Game: How the Boston Red Sox Got Smart and Finally Won a World Series

by Steve Goldman, Baseball Prospectus Team of Experts
     
 


Think You Know Baseball?
Think Again.

The Red Sox finally won a World Series, in a triumph of unconventional wisdom. They rethought the batting order and committed to Johnny Damon as lead-off. Saw the talent in David Ortiz that other teams overlooked. Had the courage to trade one of the game’s top shortstops for the good of the team. They

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Overview


Think You Know Baseball?
Think Again.

The Red Sox finally won a World Series, in a triumph of unconventional wisdom. They rethought the batting order and committed to Johnny Damon as lead-off. Saw the talent in David Ortiz that other teams overlooked. Had the courage to trade one of the game’s top shortstops for the good of the team. They knocked over the sacred cows of RBIs, sacrifice bunts, the hit-and-run, and hewed to the new thinking about pitch count—allowing Pedro Martinez, arguably baseball’s best pitcher ever, to excel. Weaving statistics, narrative, personalities, and anecdote, Mind Game reveals exactly how this group of “idiots,” led by Theo Epstein and Terry Francona, was in fact the smartest team in the league, and revolutionizes the thinking fan’s understanding of how baseball games are really won and lost.

Editorial Reviews

Wall Street Journal
“This is the book about the 90% of the game that’s half mental. It’s the smartest analysis of a smart team yet written.”
— Allen Barra, The Wall Street Journal
Library Journal
Boston Red Sox fans are in heaven! Not only has the Babe's curse been extinguished, but almost a dozen new books have been published since the Sox victory. Mind Game may well prove to be the most valuable of all. Following Dan Shaughnesey's excellent Reversing the Curse and the book by two die-hard fans of no little literary notoriety, Stewart O'Nan and Stephen King's Faithful, Goldman (Forging Genius: The Making of Casey Stengel) and his expert colleagues at Baseball Prospectus have penned a veritable "closer," the definitive account of the miracle season of 2004, warts and all. Not only does it entertain the casual ball fan with a doubleheader's worth of esting facts and provide the "stats junkies" with a seemingly inexhaustible supply of information but also the editors have succeeded in segregating these two types of discussion so that all esoteric material is contained in text boxes that may be skipped without any loss of reading pleasure. Thus, fans can derive all manner of enjoyment from a review of the merits of eschewing bunts and steals and explanations as to why strikeouts are not a concern, as well as the proper importance of pitch counts, West Coast travel, on-base percentage, and the corporate structure for success. Mind Game is that rare diamond, an intelligent and thoughtful book full of evocative sights and sounds for all ages. Indeed, no popular library should be without this "settle all arguments" and "debunk all myths" volume.-Gilles Justice Renaud, Ontario Court of Justice, Cornwall Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780761140184
Publisher:
Workman Publishing Company, Inc.
Publication date:
09/19/2005
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.98(h) x 1.08(d)

Meet the Author


Steven Goldman is the creator of the long-running Pinstriped Bible column at www.yesnetwork.com and the You Could Look It Up column for BaseballProspectus.com, a contributor to the Baseball Prospectus annual book, and the author of the biography Forging Genius: the Making of Casey Stengel. His work has also been seen in Yankees Magazine, the New York Sun, and Web sites too numerous to mention. Steven lives in New Jersey with his wife, Stefanie, daughter, Sarah, and, by the time you read this, a boy to be named later.

Baseball Prospectus Team of Experts on Baseball Talent includes, among others, Gary Huckabay, the founder of Baseball Prospectus; Chris Kahrl, a sports editor who lives in Washington, D.C.; and Dave Pease, who roots for Ryan Klesko in San Diego. Together, the roster of Baseball Prospectus writers consult to 26 of the 30 major league baseball teams.

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