Wednesday, October 5th, in PHSC 1105 at 5pm
That’s the math of baseball (and, more generally, sports).
More precisely, it’s the use of statistics and probability to evaluate players and teams by the numbers, and not just by gut feelings and urban legends. For decades, people thought a good batter was one who hit lots of home runs. But if you actually want to win games, it turns out that other things are more important!
The movie Moneyball is about how the (relatively) cash poor Oakland A’s were able to use sabermetrics to find good players with low salaries by identifying the under-appreciated players!
John Paul Cook will be telling us about the math and history behind this story:
What is Moneyball? Sure, it’s a new film about the Oakland Athletics baseball team and how they found inefficiences in the market to compete with payroll behemouths like the New York Yankees. It’s also starring Brad Pitt — maybe you’ve heard of him. But did you know that some of the methods the Oakland A’s used have a solid grounding in mathematics and statistics? In this talk, we examine some of the statistical tools employed by the frugal Oakland A’s and how they were able to compile one of baseball’s best won-loss records from 2001-2003 as a result.
— John Paul Cook’s abstract
As usual we’ll have The Pizza. But afterwords we’ll head on over to the movie theater to see the film itself!
Something for anyone who likes math, pizza, baseball, or Brad Pitt! The movie is getting great reviews. Here’s the trailer:
Note: We’ll be carpooling to the movie so if you have a car you can share, please bring it! And, sadly, you’ll have to buy your own movie ticket; so bring a little cash, too.