So the quasi-business book of the moment for me is “Wages of Wins”, which is somewhat of an extension on the themes introduced in “Moneyball”. The premise of WofW explores more of the statistic side than Moneyball ever dug into. Moneyball was a story of how to beat your competition by getting smarter with the data. WofW is breaking down the myths of what we think we know in sports (or really anything), and refuting it with hard data and analysis.
I’ve only read the first 80 pages or so and its fascinating to learn how statistics can make so-called experts look like complete idiots, especially in the sports world. The first few chapters go into ‘competitive balance’ within sports, namely with regards to Major League Baseball. There was a myth a few years back that teams like the Yankees and Red Sox had an unfair advantage in their payrolls and that small market teams can’t compete, etc. WofW does a good job in exploring the real factors that determine the outcomes of success and payroll isn’t one of them.
One of the interesting facets I’m learning so far that I’d like to read more up on, is the way these guys use regression analysis to determine which factors actual correlate win analyzing data. Like wins vs payroll, etc. I think I am actually going to pay attention to the Stats classes I have 3 semesters from now. These types of analytical techniques might come in handy when trying to determine which one of like 3 or 4 variables actually contributed to success when doing web analysis and things of that nature.
More to come on Wages of Wins as I read more of it…