Curve Ball: Baseball, Statistics, and the Role of Chance in the Game
James Albert, Jay M. Bennett | ISBN: 0387988165 | PDF | 369 pages | 2001 | 1 MB
Baseball is a fascinating game for the statistical analyst. On the surface it appears so simple and limited. But the more closely one studies the game, the more, it seems, there is to know. The coauthors are both former chairs of the American Statistical Association Section on Statistics in Sports and fans of the Philadelphia Phillies. Though there are many other books about baseball statistics, these authors are particularly sophisticated statisticians. As they illuminate baseball, they demonstrate the power of college-level statistics to interpret the numbers. Starting with simplified board game simulations, the authors show how to model player performance or predict game outcomes. Then they use actual statistics to make the models more complex and true to life. Part of the fun is that statistical results can be counterintuitive. Does the best team always win the World Series? Not necessarily. No matter how talented other teams are, the element of chance means that Phillies fans can still hope for victory. Recommended for public and academic libraries, especially in cities with a major league baseball team.