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Required Reading: The Physics of Baseball

A new addition to my slowly growing list of books for the Sabermetricians Canon:


From the Notebook

-Read “Plunkitt of Tammany Hall” by William Riordon. You’re not really a fully credentialed politico until you’ve read this short book on practical politics from one of the corrupt warden bosses in NYC. While the book isn’t entirely factual and there are plenty of references to contemporary issues which will not be appreciated by modern readers, this book is a good guide to practical politics. One of the most important lessons is that people make up a political movement, not issues. Plenty more epiphanies lie within. (This book is also going to be put into consideration for inclusion into the Conservative Canon)

-Finished “So Long and Thanks for all the Fish” by Douglas Adams. I think I’m overdosing on Adams. I didn’t particularly like this book at all.

-Finished “The Physics of Baseball” by physics professor Robert K. Adair. This is a great book for baseball enthusiasts who want to know more about the game. Adair finds out how far a homerun can travel, why left handed hitters struggle against left handed pitchers, how outfielders track fly balls and why corking bats is an ineffective way to cheat; among other findings. Really a great book. I read the 2nd edition, there’s a 3rd edition out.

– Writing Quote:

Writing is a difficult trade which must be learned slowly by reading great authors; by trying at the outset to imitate them; by daring then to be original; by destroying one’s first productions; by comparing subsequent works to recognized masterpieces and, once more, by destroying them; by crossing out whole passages; by weeping from despair; by being more severe with oneself than even the critics will be. After ten years of such arduous activity, if one has talent, one may begin to write in an acceptable manner.

–Andre Maurois

I’m kinda hoping “Terror Rats” can be that first step of self hatred that helps me become an acceptable writer.

-This year there will be no regular Twins Podcast. With MBA classes and an increased work schedule I don’t see myself having the time to produce a good show nor having the will to do a half-assed job either. But I said the same thing last year and ended up doing a bunch of shows. I think I might do a show at the end of every month focusing on sabermetric analysis of the previous month, or maybe just a long roundtable with a bunch of Twins bloggers. No promises though.