Thursday, June 16, 2011

'Moneyball' Trailer

I remember when Bring It On came out and it was followed in a few years by Drumline and critics said it was like Bring it On for band geeks.

From the looks of the first trailer, The Social Network scribe, Aaron Sorkin, and a few others wrote a screenplay that feels like The Social Network for baseball geeks.

Based on the best-selling book, Moneyball tells the story of Oakland A's manager Billy Beane and how he made a championship contending team for pennies on the dollar using advanced statistics, called 'sabremetrics' in baseball nerd jargon. By ignoring scouting techniques used for over a century, Moneyball and its sabermetric strategies caused a rift in the baseball community between old-school traditionalists and new-school math whizzes.

There are some fair criticisms to be made about Beane's strategies and how much of them actually worked and how much of his success was just luck. What can't be argued against, though, is how sabermetrics have permeated baseball culture, not only through the fantasy baseball game that nerds like Adonis and I play, but in the statistical analysis that takes place in every major league front office.

There was a great article posted last week about "Moneyball 2.0" on Grantland. The writer, Bill Barnwell, detailed how sabermetrics and Billy Beane's notion of "Moneyball" have evolved over the years and how teams have been able to maximize wins against each dollar spent. Worth a read if only because last year's overachieving San Diego Padres are used in nearly every example he uses.

As far as the movie goes, after toiling in development hell for some time, it looks like it has a lot of potential. Nazer and I were huge fans of The Social Network, and I'll watch anything that Aaron Sorkin attaches his name to (The American President is one of the greatest romantic comedies of all time).

There's a fat guy played by Jonah Hill who wows powerful people with his smarts? Lightning fast "walk and talk" dialogue along with nerdy baseball-isms? I'm not sure I can find anything to dislike there.

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