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DiMaggio5CF
01-18-05, 04:45 PM
I'm looking to pick up some baseball books as Spring Training draws near, and I'd like some recommendations on which ones are the best.

I've narrowed the choices down to five, and I'm going to buy three.

Baseball Forecaster 2005
Baseball America Almanac 2005
Baseball Register 2005
Baseball Prospectus 2005 (due out in February)
Baseball America Prospect Handbook 2005 (due out in March)

Obviously, the last two aren't out yet, but please ignore the release dates, and give your recommendations on just the books themselves.

As a side note, I'm also thinking about getting the Bill James Handbook 2005, but I'm concerned that I'll be lost since I haven't read any previous versions. I don't really need opinion about it, but rather just a simple yes/no as to whether I'll be able to understand it.

Thanks for the help!

By the way, I placed this thread in this forum because they're all baseball books, mostly about statistics. If it's in the wrong forum, please move it.

WiffleWOOD
01-18-05, 05:32 PM
I don't really know much about the Forecaster or the Register.

The Baseball Prospectus book is a must. absolute must. Especially if you don't have a subscription to the online content, and thus don't have access to their stats.

You don't need to have read previous James Handbook's to understand the 2005.

I'd say the clear choice is to buy those two. If you feel those two overlap a little too much (in being great, tell-you-everything-you-need-to-know books), I'd say the Baseball America Prospect Handbook is a good back-up.

Buzah!
01-20-05, 12:32 AM
I agree with WiffleWOOD, the Prospectus and Bill James are musts and they are excellent reads. The Register is useless. The Scouting Book is good to have, but if you don't want to spend the dough for it, check out the around the minors forum here. There are a lot of guys who follow the minors, and you'll be able to read about anyone who is making a move.

RhodyYanksFan
02-11-05, 02:51 PM
I've only read the Prospectus so I won't comment on the others. I think that for the price ($18-$20) you can't beat the Prospectus book. It has everything on every player and every team that you could want to know. It also explains their statistical categories and has a full projection and review for every team.

JeffWeaverFan
02-14-05, 05:17 PM
I'm agreeing with everyone else here. I bought the Bill James handbook a couple months ago and it was my first Bill James book and I was fine with it. Baseball Prospectus is a must.

NicktheStick36
02-16-05, 12:15 PM
If you like Prospects or just general prospecting, I found that John Sickels' Book (http://www.johnsickels.com) is a great compliment to the BA and BP stuff.

ojo
02-18-05, 01:44 PM
the baseball prospectus even softens your hands while you do the dishes!


all kidding aside, it's simply the best annual about the game. from scouting individual players to the overall state of affairs for all MLB teams. the writing is just fantastic.

hardrain
02-19-05, 07:31 AM
A new book is coming out in March. It's being presented as the "anti- sabermetic book" and an answer to Moneyball. All I am saying is it's worth a look for the other side of the argument:

Scout's Honor (http://www.midpointtradebooks.com/detail.php?bk_id=7117#)

from the promo blurb:
Scoutís Honor is an in-depth look at what instinct and gut-reaction means to baseball and how the numbers-donít-lie style of the new breed is not only misleading, but mistaken.

This should be interesting

YankeePride1967
02-19-05, 01:17 PM
I got the Prospectus last year, I highly recommend it. I will be buying it when I see it. I just went to Barnes and Noble to see if it was in, not yet.

Reno
02-19-05, 02:46 PM
I got the Prospectus last year, I highly recommend it. I will be buying it when I see it. I just went to Barnes and Noble to see if it was in, not yet.

You should pre-order it from Amazon. Only $12 with the pre-order discount.

YankeePride1967
02-19-05, 09:11 PM
You should pre-order it from Amazon. Only $12 with the pre-order discount.

Good idea, thanks! I just did through the link at the bottom of this site. Said it would ship Feb. 24.

NicktheStick36
02-21-05, 02:08 PM
A new book is coming out in March. It's being presented as the "anti- sabermetic book" and an answer to Moneyball. All I am saying is it's worth a look for the other side of the argument:

Scout's Honor (http://www.midpointtradebooks.com/detail.php?bk_id=7117#)

from the promo blurb:
Scoutís Honor is an in-depth look at what instinct and gut-reaction means to baseball and how the numbers-donít-lie style of the new breed is not only misleading, but mistaken.

This should be interesting

I'd be kind of curious about this myself, since more often than not "Reply to the change of status quo" books generally are pretty weak.

As much as I would like to say I would read it with an open mind, the fact that there are very few performance anaylsts (stat-heads) that say you can do anything without good scouting, than this will come off as very reactionary and probably borderline insulting to the reader.

Look at the Red Sox and Yankees. Both teams use a nice mix of numbers and scouting, and both have been pretty successful. Even the A's used scouting to draft their guys in the "Moneyball" Draft (see makeup ect...)

YankeePride1967
02-25-05, 02:23 PM
Good idea, thanks! I just did through the link at the bottom of this site. Said it would ship Feb. 24.

Just got notification that it shipped yesterday. Saw it today in the stores too. I bought the 2005 ESPN Baseball Encyclopedia by Pete Palmer and Gary Gillette. This has all the SABR stats in it (AOPS, etc.).

ojo
02-28-05, 12:30 PM
my baseball prospectus just arrived.

not so kind words for mr. jeter.....

RhodyYanksFan
02-28-05, 03:34 PM
I got my BP 2005 on Saturday. I haven't had time to look through it yet though. The essays in the back look interesting as hell though.

YankeePride1967
02-28-05, 09:10 PM
Mine arrived Saturday too. As anytime I have a box at my condo, I end up having to go to the post office, I just had it sent to my parent's where I was going to be yesterday anyway.

patchyfogg
03-09-05, 11:28 AM
I've been using Baseball Forecaster for years, and I swear by it.

I even had the author, Ron Shandler, on my radio show just to thank him.

patchyfogg
03-15-05, 10:48 AM
Incidentally, you can hear my Ron Shandler interview in the "Downloads" section at www.rotochamps.com

You have to register, but it's free. It's in 2 parts, because it was over 2 minidiscs, but the first part is only a couple of minutes.

Thanks, and enjoy!

shantm21
03-19-05, 12:41 AM
One book you don't have listed that I truly enjoyed and learned alot from is Tim McCarver's Baseball for Brain Surgeons and Other Fans

It was written a few years back, but it is highly informative. He talks about every facet of the game, from the broadcast booth, to pitch types to infield play. His references to different players skills and tendencies are a great inside look at the game.

It has an amazing wealth of knowledge, but doesn't bore you with statistics. If anything, it will change the way you watch baseball.

WiffleWOOD
03-19-05, 08:14 AM
i'm sorry, but all talk of Tim McCarver is banned in the Saber Forum.

Euclis
03-19-05, 10:05 PM
I'm tempted to skim through it, and if I can, thouroughly read the chapter where he explains how a walk is as good as a home run.