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Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Jenkins: Tracy Ringolsby can’t stand “Moneyball”

Tracy Ringolsby can’t stand “Moneyball”—the concept, the book, or the man who wrote it, Michael Lewis. As such, he’s ready to rip Beane every chance he gets. Ringolsby is also a Hall of Fame baseball writer and one of the game’s most respected voices over the past 30 years. It was interesting, then, to read his take on the Matt Holliday trade with St. Louis.

A bit of background: Shortly after the release of “Moneyball,” Ringolsby (then with the Rocky Mountain News) launched a searing attack on Lewis’ credibility. Aside from pointing out some (of many) factual errors in the book, Ringolsby cited some player-development evidence that Lewis chose to ignore. Getting wind of this, Jim Rome invited Lewis to appear on his ESPN television show. Looking like a complete lightweight (which he surely isn’t), Lewis greeted Ringolsby’s published attack with silly, forced laughter and called Ringolsby a “midget” in the business. That was a big mistake, and with his dreadfully elitist’s response, Lewis looked as if a stiff breeze would blow him right off camera—a difficult thing to witness, certainly, for any fan of his top-shelf writing.

Switch now to Monday, when Ringolsby addressed the Holliday trade in his FoxSports.com column. The issue we’re all trying to evaluate is the matter of (a) acquiring Holliday for Huston Street, Carlos Gonzalez and Greg Smith; and (b) unloading Holliday for Brett Wallace, Shane Peterson and Clayton Mortensen. Some, including FoxSports’ own Ken Rosenthal, have called this exchange the latest measure of Beane’s genius.

...Ringolsby went on to note Street’s value to the Rockies (“he has regained his late-inning magic) and adds that Wallace “is not in the same area code as Gonzalez in any category beyond power.” The truth is that nobody really has a clue how this will all turn out in the end. We certainly know, however, how Mr. Ringolsby feels about it.

Thanks to Barnald the Chair Catcher.

Repoz Posted: July 29, 2009 at 01:17 PM | 83 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: athletics, cardinals, minor leagues

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   1. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: July 29, 2009 at 01:33 PM (#3272015)
I really wonder if these people who are threatened by the use of statistics in player evaluation are like this in their everyday lives.

"No officer, I know your radar gun said I was traveling 86 MPH but I've been driving for 20 years and I was only going 55."

"I'm sorry, I prefer a carpenter who eyeballs things, please put away that fancy "ruler" that you have there."

"GM is a big company, they employ lots of people, there is no way they are losing money no matter what your fancy dancy accountants say."
   2. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 01:48 PM (#3272027)
As a life-long A's fan, the media's relationship with Beane has been farcical. He's a genius and now he's an idiot who deserves to be fired when they only really care about is a book written by a finance guy that sold a bazillion copies and has been linked to Brad Pitt etc. Let's call it what it is--deep, professional envy. I don't blame them. I'm sure most sportswriters dream of writing a book that will make them a million dollars and a celebrity. It must have sucked for a dilletante to swoop in and steal their glory. Maybe Tracy Ringolsby knows more about baseball, but Michael Lewis is a better writer. A far better writer. It must be a bitter pill to swallow. Michael Lewis never had to stand around the locker of a sweaty, arrogant sub-literate begging for a piece of a cliche to squeeze into the morning edition. Lewis got to make a ton of money right out of college and then, when he tired of Wall St. he was able to turn his ennui about making all that money into MORE money, and fame to boot. And then, when he tired of writing about his ennui he was able to turn to one of his passing interests and make himself even more money and fame. Hell, I'm starting to hate this Michael Lewis guy.

And now I wait for all the constructive criticism from the resident Beane-bashers who like to use Beane as their conduit to expose how arrogant Primates are about their baseball knowledge by illustrating how much more they know about running a team than Beane.
   3. Flynn Posted: July 29, 2009 at 01:50 PM (#3272032)
I don't know how much of that is Ringolsby's feelings or Jenkins's enormous axe to grind (Tracy can't be totally hostile to stats or he wouldn't post here), but you can't be opposed to stats then use RBIs.

Lewis's comment is pretty douchey, though.
   4. RJ in TO Posted: July 29, 2009 at 01:50 PM (#3272033)
I really enjoy the rare occasions where Shooty loses it.
   5. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 01:53 PM (#3272037)
I really enjoy the rare occasions where Shooty loses it.

But not a single curse! And I don't think I said anything I'm going to regret. From my time hanging out with writers, I know they can be an incredibly petty bunch of insecure jagoffs.
   6. GregQ Posted: July 29, 2009 at 01:54 PM (#3272039)
I am pretty sure that Jenkins is solidly in lock step with Ringolsby's thinking. A former co-worker of Jenkins told me that he had ever met a person that was as inflexible in his opinions and unwilling to look at new ways to examine a baseball game.
   7. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 01:56 PM (#3272043)
Lewis's comment is pretty douchey, though.

Sure, Lewis is an incredibly arrogant dude. I think it comes from having everything he touches turn to gold. He's even come out with one of those "I'm a parent! I think I'll write a book about it!" books that have made me reconsider my anti-bookburning stance. Do mother's really need Jenny McCarthy's advice on how to raise their kid? Tori Spelling's? WTF America? WTF?
   8. RJ in TO Posted: July 29, 2009 at 01:57 PM (#3272045)
From my time hanging out with writers, I know they can be an incredibly petty bunch of insecure jagoffs.


From my time hanging out with people, I know they can be an incredibly petty bunch of insecure jagoffs.
   9. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 01:58 PM (#3272048)
From my time hanging out with people, I know they can be an incredibly petty bunch of insecure jagoffs.

I think our mutual misanthropy is why we're tied to the hip around here. It also explains our mutual love for the hard spirits.
   10. philly Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:01 PM (#3272051)
Shooty's rant is fine and all, but doesn't the second paragrpah boil bown:

- Ringolsby had issues with the book that were (apparently) correct

- Lewis behaved like a jackass thereby personally insulting Ringolsby

- Ringolsby continues to hold a grudge

and if so, I'm not sure why Ringolsby and not Lewis is the subject of the rant.

Ringolsby may hate stats and sabremetrics and all that. He's surely not as good a writer. He probably is envious of Lewis' success. Human nature doesn't make that a stretch at all.

I've often believed that one of the biggest problems with the Moneyball phenomena and how it has effected the wider baseball community is that Lewis, despite being a very good writer and storyteller, was in many ways a lousy messenger.

I'd never heard of this Rome show thing, but it fits in with a pattern of childish, imbecilic behavior on the part of Lewis as he was playing the role of bringing sabremetrics to the masses. As a result Lewis largely contributed to the backlash to his book by more mainstream baseball people like Ringolsby.
   11. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:04 PM (#3272056)
and if so, I'm not sure why Ringolsby and not Lewis is the subject of the rant.

Because if Ringolsby has a beef with Lewis, he should call out Lewis and not grind his axe against the A's. I'm an A's fan, not a Michael Lewis fan. He wants to go mano a mano with Lewis, he's welcome to it. Enjoy!
   12. The District Attorney Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:06 PM (#3272058)
Ringolsby reads BTF; naturally he's sick of <u>Moneyball</u> ;-)
   13. Maxwn Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:07 PM (#3272061)
Who is Michael Lewis and what does he have to do with Billy Beane's book?
   14. AROM Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:08 PM (#3272063)
You can be anti-moneyball and still have a good understanding of baseball and what it's statistics mean. Ringolsby is a smart dude. He's not the primitive who feels threatened with any stat more complicated than batting average.

It looks more like a personal issue here. I can certainly see how Lewis can rub people the wrong way. It's unfortunate that such personal issues can't be separated when evaluating a trade made by someone Lewis wrote a book about 7 years ago.

I'd probably side with CarGone and Street over Wallace as far as who I'd like to have on my team. The other players involved don't seem that interesting.
   15. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:09 PM (#3272065)
Ringolsby reads BTF; naturally he's sick of Moneyball ;-)

Amen, brother. That book has been a curse. And still no books about Dwayne Murphy or Shooty Babbit!
   16. A triple short of the cycle Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:14 PM (#3272072)
Above the Ringolsby bit, Jenkins writes the A's need to part ways with Chavez.
Now he wants to come back, and what the hell, he should. A ballplayer should never retire until he's absolutely certain it's over. But the A's need to ease him out of the organization, as gently as possible. Bringing him into next year's spring training would be laughable, in the wake of all the disappointment his injuries have wrought. Good luck to a very good man, in a much-needed change of locale.
How is this supposed to happen. He's under contract for 2009 right?
   17. A triple short of the cycle Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:15 PM (#3272073)
EDIT: Maybe he means they should DL him forever.
   18. RJ in TO Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:15 PM (#3272074)
And still no books about Dwayne Murphy or Shooty Babbit!


To be fair, how many people would be interested in reading a book about a Rilke translating baseball player living in Eastern Europe?
   19. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:15 PM (#3272075)
I'd probably side with CarGone and Street over Wallace as far as who I'd like to have on my team. The other players involved don't seem that interesting.

You may be right. I don't think CarGon will ever hit and Street has been ably replaced by Bailey and Wuertz has turned out to be a freakin steal. Wallace is the best hitter of the group and that's what the A's need. There's also the fact that the A's thought they might be able to compete for the division when they traded for Holliday, so even if the prospects turn out to be a wash, I'm glad they made the attempt to go for it without mortgaging the future. I think the Holliday move was pretty solid gming. His non-play for Willingham or Branyan--who would have been perfect, cheap fits on the team--and his boring signing of Giambi are what bothered me this past offseason. Signing Giambi was just phoning it in.
   20. SoSH U at work Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:15 PM (#3272077)
Was there something in Tracy's column that's actually evidence that he's still holding on to some Lewis/Beane grudge, or is it possible he just thought the trades were a net loss for th A's? 'Cause that's OK, right?
   21. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:16 PM (#3272079)
To be fair, how many people would be interested in reading a book about a Rilke translating baseball player living in Eastern Europe?

Oh, but Tori Spelling can publish a book about motherhood. Nuke the world now. I don't care anymore.
   22. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:18 PM (#3272083)
Was there something in Tracy's column that's actually evidence that he's still holding on to some Lewis/Beane grudge, or is it possible he just thought the trades were a net loss for th A's? 'Cause that's OK, right?

Naw, Ringolsby's column was dripping with spite. It's one thing to argue the A's had a net loss, but it's another to argue they were ripped off in these deals as they clearly weren't. They look like fair deals all around to me.
   23. RJ in TO Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:18 PM (#3272084)
Oh, but Tori Spelling can publish a book about motherhood.


Just because she published it doesn't mean anyone will read it.

Nuke the world now. I don't care anymore.


You sound like me discussing the current state of my Jays fanhood.
   24. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:20 PM (#3272086)
Just because she published it doesn't mean anyone will read it.

She had 'em lined up at the Borders down the street. They can't just be buying the book for the cover picture, right? Right?
   25. RJ in TO Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:22 PM (#3272089)
They can't just be buying the book for the cover picture, right? Right?


Perhaps there was an equestrian convention in town.
   26. Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:26 PM (#3272095)
Do mother's really need Jenny McCarthy's advice on how to raise their kid?

Of course, if they want to avoid the scourge of vaccines that threaten to turn our land into an autism-ravaged hellhole. If Jenny McCarthy can just put a dent in our herd immunity, all her work will not be in vain.

Tomorrow's article: Tracy Ringolsby can't stand "The Blind Side" -- the concept, the book, or the man who wrote it, Michael Lewis. As such, he's ready to rip Michael Oher every chance he gets.
   27. An Athletic in Powderhorn™ Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:32 PM (#3272111)
People will read Rick Reilly, they will pay to see Epic Movie, they will listen to Panic! at the Disco. There's nothing we can do about it. When this happens, I can have one of three reactions. I can despair for humanity. I can say to myself, "There but for the grace of Ibsen, go I." Or I can point and laugh. I usually feel best when I point and laugh.
   28. JRVJ (formerly Delta Socrates) Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:33 PM (#3272114)
I'd never really read Lewis' work, other than a piece here or there in the NYT Magazine and Vanity Fair (the Iceland piece) which I really liked.

With the current world crisis, I kept reading how great Liar's Poker was, so I bought it used for like 50 cents on Amazon.

Loved the book, then bought Pacific Rift and the New New Thing (also cheap online).

Love those too.

So now I've taken the plunge and have ordered Moneyball (as well as the Money Culture), second hand.

I'll try to read Moneyball from a non-baseball fan's perspective, and see if it's a good yarn (because Lewis can write a good yarn), regardless of the debates about sabermetrics, Billy Beane, etc.
   29. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:34 PM (#3272116)
Or I can point and laugh. I usually feel best when I point and laugh.

True. But sometimes you get the blues.
   30. rfloh Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:36 PM (#3272120)
1. Jose Can You Seabiscuit Posted: July 29, 2009 at 09:33 AM (#3272015)
I really wonder if these people who are threatened by the use of statistics in player evaluation are like this in their everyday lives.

"No officer, I know your radar gun said I was traveling 86 MPH but I've been driving for 20 years and I was only going 55."

"I'm sorry, I prefer a carpenter who eyeballs things, please put away that fancy "ruler" that you have there."

"GM is a big company, they employ lots of people, there is no way they are losing money no matter what your fancy dancy accountants say."


Moneyball != sabermetrics.

Hating Moneyball does not mean hating statistics in baseball / sabermetrics, or empirical evaluation of players as much as possible.

I HATE Moneyball. It has nothing to do with any objection against statistical evaluation of players. I am all for trying to empirically evaluate players, by any method, as much as possible.

THAT is why I hate Moneyball. Not statistics, not Lewis' arrogance. Lewis pretended that what he wrote was fact, when even the protagonists involved have said some of it wasn't. I hate Moneyball because Lewis presented opinion as fact.

Remember the section where Lewis ridiculed various draft picks? I wonder whether Lewis wants to ever talk about that section nowadays.
   31. Dewey, Crackpot and Soupuss Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:37 PM (#3272121)
Remember the section where Lewis ridiculed various draft picks? I wonder whether Lewis wants to ever talk about that section nowadays.

Prince Fielder = Too fat even for the A's.
   32. PASTE Thinks This Trout Kid Might Be OK (Zeth) Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:39 PM (#3272125)
It does seem like the vultures are starting to circle Beane, isn't it? There's always a certain special kind of media exposure that happens to a GM (or manager/coach) before he gets fired, and in the past week or two I've seen stories on the 'Why Doesn't Beane's #### Work At All Anymore?' on the big outlets, particularly ESPN. The pressure's building; it's probably only a matter of time now before Beane is fired or resigns.
   33. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:43 PM (#3272131)
The pressure's building; it's probably only a matter of time now before Beane is fired or resigns.

Yep, I've noticed that. It's the standard build someone up and then tear them down dynamic. Hopefully A's management has thick skin. Then again, I'd hate to think the rantings of Bruce Jenkins and the Contra Costa times are going to have too much influence.
   34. zack Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:44 PM (#3272132)
Ringolsby is the guy with the hat, right?

Is the article still around? I'd be interested in what the factual errors were.
   35. RJ in TO Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:46 PM (#3272134)
Ringolsby is the guy with the hat, right?


While Ringolsby may have a hat, I thought Celizic is Hat Guy.
   36. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:47 PM (#3272135)
While Ringolsby may have a hat, I thought Celizic is Hat Guy.

You are correct, sir.
   37. Kurt Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:48 PM (#3272139)
Just because she published it doesn't mean anyone will read it.

My guess is that writing books about mother/fatherhood is the literary equivalent of Christmas songs. No matter how crappy it is, there's a built-in market.
   38. zack Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:49 PM (#3272140)
Unfortunately there is just no way to turn "Tracy Ringolsby" into a cowboy name.
   39. SoSH U at work Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:50 PM (#3272142)
While Ringolsby may have a hat, I thought Celizic is Hat Guy.


One of Tracy's column mugs showed him in cowboy hat.
   40. Dewey, Crackpot and Soupuss Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:50 PM (#3272144)
My guess is that writing books about mother/fatherhood is the literary equivalent of Christmas songs.

The blogs most sought out by advertisers are those written by mothers about motherhood.
   41. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:51 PM (#3272145)
Unfortunately there is just no way to turn "Tracy Ringolsby" into a cowboy name.

No way in hell I'm making a hacky Brokeback Mountain joke here. I'll just wait for Ryan to do it...
   42. RJ in TO Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:53 PM (#3272152)
No way in hell I'm making a hacky Brokeback Mountain joke here. I'll just wait for Ryan to do it...


Oh sure. Just another example of immigrants doing the jobs that Americans just don't want to do.
   43. SoSH U at work Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:53 PM (#3272153)
Ringolsby is a member of the executive committee of the National Western Stock Show, a member at the benefactor level of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, and a member of the board of directors of the Cowboy Joe Club at the University of Wyoming.


At least he's got some cowoby bonafides, even if the name doesn't fit.
   44. The District Attorney Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:56 PM (#3272160)
One of Tracy's column mugs showed him in cowboy hat.
Ringolsby is a member of the executive committee of the National Western Stock Show, a member at the benefactor level of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, and a member of the board of directors of the Cowboy Joe Club at the University of Wyoming.
So is Neyer really a lumberjack??
   45. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 02:57 PM (#3272161)
So is Neyer really a lumberjack??

I thought he was in Pearl Jam.
   46. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:00 PM (#3272166)
She had 'em lined up at the Borders down the street. They can't just be buying the book for the cover picture, right? Right?

Shooty, did she really? I work for her publishing company and while I admit I don't pay attention to the numbers, I wondered what in the world justified putting out a second book of hers within 13 months.
   47. Nasty Nate Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:01 PM (#3272168)
do the evolution
   48. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:04 PM (#3272173)
Shooty, did she really? I work for her publishing company and while I admit I don't pay attention to the numbers, I wondered what in the world justified putting out a second book of hers within 13 months.

Yep. I was their getting a book about the birds of Australia so I wasn't paying attention too much. It could have been just a bunch of celebrity-gawkers who bought the book as an excuse to have a brush with, um, "greatness".
   49. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:04 PM (#3272174)
Birds of Australia. Right.
   50. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:07 PM (#3272179)
Birds of Australia. Right.
Brits call 'em Birds, Aussies call 'em Sheilas.
   51. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:09 PM (#3272181)
So you bought a British nudie book of Sheilas?
   52. Dr Stankus and the Semicolons Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:10 PM (#3272184)
Isn't this book like 7 years old at this point?
   53. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:11 PM (#3272188)
Birds of Australia. Right.

I am deadly serious. Wildlife photography is one of my hobbies and the main reason I'm going to Australia.

So you bought a British nudie book of Sheilas?

Well, not yet, but it sounds good.
   54. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:13 PM (#3272194)
Wildlife photography is one of my hobbies and the main reason I'm going to Australia.

I need a life.
   55. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:17 PM (#3272202)
Wildlife photography is one of my hobbies and the main reason I'm going to Australia.

I need a life.


Why? I don't see how my ability for transcendent nerdiness requires anything life changes on your part.
   56. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:24 PM (#3272213)
Why? I don't see how my ability for transcendent nerdiness requires anything life changes on your part.

It doesn't, really. The fact you're going to Australia is serving as a reminder that I haven't really done anything with my summer, or have done anything interesting or even productive lately. I'll go saunter over on the Dashboard Confessional forum before I turn into an emo drama queen.
   57. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:28 PM (#3272217)
It doesn't, really. The fact you're going to Australia is serving as a reminder that I haven't really done anything with my summer, or have done anything interesting or even productive lately. I'll go saunter over on the Dashboard Confessional forum before I turn into an emo drama queen.

I'm here if you need a hug. I haven't done much this summer, either, yet. I've been on a real run of making inappropriate comments in mixed company so I'm afraid to socialize anymore. Of course, I blame you ######## for this. Jerks.
   58. Tom Nawrocki Posted: July 29, 2009 at 03:49 PM (#3272262)
The chance to compete didn't pan out, but: neither do most minor league prospects teams trade for, and the fact Holliday didn't play well


Holliday was arguably the A's best player while he was on the team, wasn't he? I guess Adam Kennedy or Dallas Braden have an argument too.

That's not to say he wasn't disappointing. But you know you've got a player on your hands when all people can talk about is what a down season he's having, and he's still the best guy on the team. Or maybe you just have a really bad team.
   59. jwb Posted: July 29, 2009 at 04:41 PM (#3272363)
To be fair, how many people would be interested in reading a book about a Rilke translating baseball player living in Eastern Europe?
But an internal dialogue on the nature of Rilke's angels while coaching first base against an Angels' A ball team, that has potential.
   60. Petunia inquires about ponies Posted: July 29, 2009 at 05:36 PM (#3272483)
Maybe Tracy Ringolsby knows more about baseball, but Michael Lewis is a better writer.


Lewis is not in the same area code as Ringolsby in any category beyond writing ability.
   61. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 05:40 PM (#3272488)
Lewis is not in the same area code as Ringolsby in any category beyond writing ability.

Considering their profession, that's a fairly important area code.
   62. Edmundo got dem ol' Kozma blues again mama Posted: July 29, 2009 at 05:44 PM (#3272497)
Considering their profession, that's a fairly important area code.
SNAP!
   63. An Athletic in Powderhorn™ Posted: July 29, 2009 at 05:46 PM (#3272504)
I have no love for Michael Lewis the person. But Ringolsby isn't in Lewis's area code in writing ability, either.
   64. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 05:47 PM (#3272508)
Considering their profession, that's a fairly important area code.
SNAP!


Look, I don't know what these guys are like in private. They could both be swell guys or they could both be jackasses or whatever. I can only judge their respective work.
   65. bunyon Posted: July 29, 2009 at 05:50 PM (#3272515)
Michael Lewis should never have traded Matt Holliday.
   66. Obama Bomaye Posted: July 29, 2009 at 05:53 PM (#3272521)
I'd say they were at least within a few zip codes of each other, but that might start some crazy debate.
   67. The District Attorney Posted: July 29, 2009 at 05:54 PM (#3272525)
It would, pal... because they could be within a few zip codes of each other AND YET BE SITTING IN THE VERY SAME CHAIR.

I've seen it happen, you know.
   68. Dan Szymborski Posted: July 29, 2009 at 06:07 PM (#3272554)
they will listen to Panic! at the Disco.

I'm courting a flame here, but I find their second album to be an amazing improvement over their unlistenable debut.
   69. ValueArb Posted: July 29, 2009 at 06:10 PM (#3272562)
I have no love for Michael Lewis the person. But Ringolsby isn't in Lewis's area code in writing ability, either.


Lewis is an amazing writer, esp. at explaining complex things to a broad audience in an interesting, i.e. dramatic, manner. But clearly he cuts corners to do so, possibly because the most complex things he doesn't understand well, and sometimes because the truth can be inconvenient when building drama. Even after Liars Poker I'm not sure he really understands much about investment practices other than those that had to do with his narrow little world as a bond salesman.

And both he and Tracy are self important aholes.
   70. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 29, 2009 at 06:11 PM (#3272563)
I'm courting a flame here, but I find their second album to be an amazing improvement over their unlistenable debut.

I don't know who Panic! at the Disco are...but you are wrong, so very wrong. Couldn't be wronger. What a dope you are!
   71. The Keith Law Blog Blah Blah (battlekow) Posted: July 29, 2009 at 06:16 PM (#3272572)
Look, I don't know what these guys are like in private. They could both be swell guys or they could both be jackasses or whatever. I can only judge their respective work.

Get Adam Rubin on the case.
   72. JJ1986 Posted: July 29, 2009 at 06:19 PM (#3272576)
I'm courting a flame here, but I find their second album to be an amazing improvement over their unlistenable debut.

I thought the first was catchy and listenable and bombastic in its badness. The follow up was just bland.
   73. phredbird Posted: July 29, 2009 at 06:38 PM (#3272613)
michael lewis should never have written that book.
   74. phredbird Posted: July 29, 2009 at 06:40 PM (#3272620)
i know a couple of previous posters were riffing on that, but i said it first so i win the thread.
   75. villageidiom Posted: July 29, 2009 at 06:43 PM (#3272633)
Clearly Ringolsby is acting here as a media mouthpiece for the Red Sox front office. Take this as a sign that the Red Sox are trying to unload Moneyball, and are looking to tear down public opinion of Moneyball so they'll look good when they drop it.
   76. An Athletic in Powderhorn™ Posted: July 29, 2009 at 06:47 PM (#3272652)
I've only heard a few of their singles, "The Only Difference Between Martyrdom and Suicide is Press Coverage", "Lying is the Most Fun a Girl Can Have Without Taking Her Clothes Off", "Nine in the Afternoon", and "That Green Gentleman", which are uniformly bad. Those titles don't help, either.

Edit: I agree with ValueArb's assessment of Lewis's writing. Great storytelling, good prose, tends to warp the details to fit his thesis.
   77. Petunia inquires about ponies Posted: July 29, 2009 at 11:49 PM (#3273115)
I was just joking about the "area code" comment in the excerpt comparing CarGon to Wallace the Jeans-Seller.

And I agree wholly with #73 on P!atD.
   78. thread killer Posted: July 30, 2009 at 12:38 AM (#3273200)
Those albums would have been better if Michael Lewis had written them.
   79. nick swisher hygiene Posted: July 30, 2009 at 12:43 AM (#3273203)
Newsblog: Pope Catholic, bear #### in woods.
   80. McCoy Posted: July 30, 2009 at 12:47 AM (#3273211)
Is that in regard to a BTF thread turning into a crappy music thread or something else?
   81. nick swisher hygiene Posted: July 30, 2009 at 01:12 AM (#3273238)
in regard to "TR can't stand Moneyball"........but yeah, you're right--hey, wanna buy some Pavement rarities on vinyl??
   82. Shooty Survived the Shutdown of '14! Posted: July 30, 2009 at 02:10 AM (#3273285)
in regard to "TR can't stand Moneyball"........but yeah, you're right--hey, wanna buy some Pavement rarities on vinyl??

As a matter of fact...sure. Do you have a Zurich Stained 45?
   83. An Athletic in Powderhorn™ Posted: July 30, 2009 at 02:40 AM (#3273305)
As a matter of fact...sure. Do you have a Zurich Stained 45?"


Note to self: never mention pop music again. As any Primer discussion that mentions pop music grows longer, the probability of a post involving Pavement approaches 1.

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