We could go through retired Detroit News columnist Jerry Green’s 1,032 word literary assault on modern baseball analytics (and things that he believes to be modern baseball analytics), but to assign a myriad of different logical fallacies to almost every sentence would not only be unnecessarily time consuming, it would also verge on intellectual bullying.
Allow me, instead, to summarize his 1,032 word mock treatise on old time baseball, and hopefully avoid the temptation to tastelessly question the elderly writer’s senility:
I have watched, continue to watch and will in the future watch baseball in a particular way. I am incapable of appreciating multiple elements of the game, so by willingly remaining ignorant to vast amounts of data, I can safely assume that those not remaining willfully ignorant are just as limited as me. This allows me to further believe that the only way to properly enjoy the sport is the way that I do. Also, get off my lawn.
Perhaps the most humourous part of Mr. Green’s unintentionally comedic ramblings is that in aimlessly attacking the Sabermetrics community, knowingly or not, his literary assault is also targeting internet writing where much of the Sabermetric community discusses their ideas and share their analysis of baseball. This is notable because at the end of his column, we find this:
No one is crying because Jerry Green isn’t actively curious about the inner workings of the game he watches. That’s fine. Sabermetrics aren’t an evangelical pursuit. I’d like for more people to be on the same page for the sake of baseball discussion, but frankly, there’s so much good baseball writing out there already, that bad baseball writing doesn’t bother me like it once did.
However, I don’t especially enjoy the myth that somehow by showing interest in probabilities based on outcomes from previous situations in baseball (or statistics), one cannot enjoy the more narrative-based and intangible elements of the game. I’m not even that smart and I can enjoy both. In fact, I think my understanding of the seemingly random happenings on a baseball diamond and the stories that accompany them is actually enhanced by looking at numbers and the likelihoods that they establish, not diminished.
But woe to you if you don’t watch the game and enjoy only those aspects that were previously celebrated. Jerry Green is here to tell you that you’re doing it wrong.