Moneyball by Michael Lewis is a fascinating look at market inefficiencies in professional baseball. Lewis relates how one team, the Oakland Athletics, used those inefficiencies to find great success. They discovered that men on base are the most statistically relevant factor in whether or not a team will score. Following that train of thought to its logical conclusion, a player who gets on base 40% of the time is a more valuable commodity than someone who just hits home runs. This statistical evidence flies in the face of one hundred and fifty years of anecdotal experience, but the Athletics were right and management in professional sports has fundamentally changed as a result. Could publishing be in need of a similar awakening?
Reading is an inherently subjective pursuit. As a book critic, I make recommendations based solely on my own impressions. I can struggle to frame why I feel the way I do.… Read the rest