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The Bill James Gold Mine

3.57  ·  Rating Details ·  108 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
For decades, the name Bill James has been synonymous with cutting-edge baseball statistical analysis. In his latest work, James lives up to that reputation with the The Bill James Gold Mine 2009 - a groundbreaking collection of original essays, statistical profiles, and hidden "nuggets" of information worth their weight in gold. In seventeen original essays and numerous ne ...more
Paperback, 271 pages
Published March 1st 2009 by ACTA Publications (first published February 15th 2007)
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Steven Peterson
Jul 31, 2009 Steven Peterson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoy reading the array of Bill James books that come out. "Gold Mine" is one of those annual works that brings a smile to my face. I do wish that there were more statistics per team, but the quirky little essays that are scattered throughout the book provide value added material for the reader.

The first quirky essay is "The 96 families of hitters," in which James creates families of hitters, based on similar statistics (the ratio of doubles to triples to homers). He analyzes all major league
May 02, 2009 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
While there are other Sabremetricians writing other good baseball books (most notably Rob Neyer, John Thorn and Pete Palmer), I still find Bill James's writing the most compelling. Perhaps it's because he's done it the longest. But I think it's because he chooses the best subjects to write about. As he explains in one of his essays, the job of the sabremetrician is to use tools to break down a subjective question (say, is Juan Pierre better than Ichiro Suzuki) into smaller objective pieces (say, ...more
Jan 17, 2016 Rodger rated it liked it
Shelves: baseball
Bill James is a terrific baseball writer, but these recent annual Gold Mine books are not nearly as good as the old Abstracts were. Mostly, James reports statistical oddities -- interesting, but some focus on small sample sizes that the author taught readers to ignore long ago. Still, some new James is better than no new James. I especially enjoyed the occasional short essays between some of the team pages. For example, this book includes an interesting bit of research producing what James calls ...more
Jul 03, 2012 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reread this when I ran out of library books during 3-day (or was it 30? maybe that was subjective time) power outage. Not as great as the old annual baseball abstracts he did, but a nice sampler of James' funny writing and distinctive voice as he reports baseball research. A little heavy-handed on the ads for his subscription-based website, but if you can ignore that, a fun read for those who like baseball, data, and clear thinking about the interrelation of the two.
Apr 21, 2010 Spiros rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: stat-heads who appreciate good writing
Shelves: new, beisbol
I believe that only Bill James would begin an article: "This started out as something entirely different, and I'm not going to tell you what it was because it didn't work and it wasn't important."
What we have here is a slimmed down version of his usual yearly Abstract, with much more cursory team sections, supplemented by in-depth articles on subjects which seem to have fired Mr. James interest.
Great fun.
Jan 17, 2016 Rodger rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've been a big fan of Bill James since the mid-1980s. This book includes many interesting and useful nuggets of baseball information, though it occasionally sinks into what I would call Elias-territory by identifying trivial pieces of information that vary randomly from year-to-year. The book would have been half as thick with less white space and far fewer useless graphics.
Eric Hines
Aug 04, 2016 Eric Hines rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: baseball, sports
Brief essays on a variety of topics for each team, longer essays on more general topics. And stats, of course. Not as good as the Baseball Books of the early 1990s, but more good prose and analysis than the more recent, more stats heavy books.
Mar 31, 2008 Michael rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sports
Basically a big advertisement for this website.
Ray Charbonneau
OK. Lots of fun facts, and a few good essays, but not anywhere near as much fun as the old Abstracts.
Lee (Rocky)
Apr 28, 2009 Lee (Rocky) rated it really liked it
Not as great as the old Abstracts but still several great essays and the usual insight and analysis. Bill James can do no wrong by me.
Mar 04, 2008 Michael rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2008_read
I love everything that James has ever written. I would devour a dissertation about Stanley Jefferson's 1989 season with glee if only James would take the time to tackle the topic.

Jun 26, 2008 Jack rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not just for stat-heads; as with all of James' best work, the essays, frequently hilarious, always insightful, are the best part.
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George William “Bill” James (born October 5, 1949, in Holton, Kansas) is a baseball writer, historian, and statistician whose work has been widely influential. Since 1977, James has written more than two dozen books devoted to baseball history and statistics. His approach, which he termed sabermetrics in reference to the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR), scientifically analyzes and st ...more
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