Thursday, June 30, 2022

Review of "Memories of Evil: Recalling a World War II Childhood," by Peter Kubicek

 Review of

Memories of Evil: Recalling a World War II Childhood, by Peter Kubicek, ISBN 9781480163201

Five out of five stars

While unique to the author, the experience of millions

 The author was a Jew living in Eastern Europe when the Germans invaded and took control. A fundamental part of their strategy was to exploit the Jewish population whenever possible and exterminate otherwise. Kubicek was an inmate in six German camps, surviving via a combination of luck and some skills. One of the simplest was his ability to repair socks. Wherever he went, there was always someone that gave him that extra slice of bread or other sustenance that was the difference between life and death.

 While Kubicek’s story about life in the camps is of course unique to him, the basic experiences were those of millions of people, most of which did not survive. One of the most interesting points in the book is how he encountered a man that was a German criminal assigned to the camps. As such a person, he was considered non-political and given a decent job with better food, shelter and clothing. Some of those benefits were passed along to Kubicek.

A sad tale of history that must never be forgotten, this is a story that is both unique and yet depressingly common and most often not told due to the deaths of the principals at the hands of the Germans.

Review of "I Love This Game! My Life and Baseball," by Kirby Puckett

 Review of

I Love This Game! My Life and Baseball, by Kirby Puckett ISBN 0060177101

Five out of five stars

Autobiography without the dirt

 There is no question that Kirby Puckett was one of the best baseball players of his generation and deserves his post in the Hall of Fame. Even though his career was cut short due to blindness in one eye, so his numbers will at first glance appear to be weak. This book is an autobiography written while he was still in his prime, before all of the subsequent difficulties emerged.

 The story is about his life in and out of baseball, mostly in. It is written with some level of humility, but not overly so. He recounts many incidents in his baseball life, including his close relationships with others in baseball. Puckett was one of the few modern players that spent his entire career with one team, the Minnesota Twins. Therefore, he had a great deal of time to build up the reciprocal loyalty between a player and the team fan base.

 If you are a fan of baseball in general and the Minnesota Twins in particular, you will enjoy this book. It is generally about baseball only, there is none of the dirty laundry and over-the-top self-serving rhetoric that is so common in the modern books written about sports figures.

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Review of "Special Collector’s Edition: The Pack is Back," by Gary D’Amato et. al.

 Review of

Special Collector’s Edition: The Pack is Back, by Gary D’Amato et. al. ISBN: 9780983198550

Five out of five stars

The road to a championship was uneven

 The road that the Green Bay Packers traveled en route to a Super Bowl victory in the 2010-2011 NFL season was full of difficulties. Their record in the regular season was 10-6 and they managed to acquire a wildcard playoff berth due to the tiebreakers rather than outright. There were several times when they played poorly and only barely managed to pull out the victory.

 Yet, when the playoffs began, they had the appearance of a team of destiny, their victories in the playoffs were not overwhelming, yet the big play was made when it was needed. This book, written by the obviously biased Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal Sentinel, is a history of what seemed to be a magical season.

Each game is dissected with explanations as to why the Packers either won or lost, presented with only a modest amount of bias. The basic statistics are presented  and there are feature pieces on some of the major players such as coach Mike McCarthy and Aaron Rodgers. Whether you are a Packer fan or not, this book is one that you will enjoy if you are a follower of NFL football.

Saturday, June 25, 2022

Review of "Sunshine Makes the Seasons," by Franklyn M. Branley

 Review of

Sunshine Makes the Seasons, by Franklyn M. Branley ISBN 9780062382092

Five out of five stars

Great introductory science book

 Even adults can be uncertain as to why the seasons cycle through in the non-equatorial regions. Yet, it is one of the most fundamental events in the climate of the Earth. This book is an excellent introductory treatise on the basic science of the seasons.

 Written at the level of the middle years elementary school student, the explanations are excellent and can be the subject of basic, inexpensive verification in the classroom. Teachers, parents and children can all find valuable information in this book.

Thursday, June 23, 2022

Review of "Super Bowl: Pro Football’s Greatest Games and Stars," by Steve Gelman

 Review of

Super Bowl: Pro Football’s Greatest Games and Stars, by Steve Gelman

Four out of five stars

The first Super Bowls defined parity

 When the NFL and AFL merged, the common belief was that it was a combination of two unequal leagues. The more established NFL was considered superior, and that belief was supported  by the two easy victories by the Green Bay Packers over their AFL opponents in the first two Super Bowls. However, that thought was overturned when the New York Jets defeated the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III and the Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Minnesota Vikings in Super Bowl IV.

 This book contains brief histories of the first six Super Bowls as well as a brief biography of the stars of each. It is a look back to a time when the Super Bowl was not the incredible extravaganza that it is now. They were important, those first few championship games defined the league, when the supposed upstarts demonstrated that they could play with the big boys. Everyone considered it eventual, just not as soon as it happened.

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Review of "Don’t Look Back: Satchel Paige in the Shadows of Baseball," by Mark Ribowsky

 Review of

Don’t Look Back: Satchel Paige in the Shadows of Baseball, by Mark Ribowsky ISBN 0671776746

Five out of five stars

A biography of the likely greatest

 Overwhelming arguments can be made that LeRoy (Satchel) Paige was the greatest pitcher ever. It is certain that he pitched more professional innings than anyone else and the stories about his speed and control are too numerous to doubt. Hall of Fame players such as Bob Feller, Ted Williams and Lou Boudreau attested to his amazing abilities on the mound.

 The best statement I ever heard about Paige was from a fellow Negro league player. It was, “The Good Lord didn’t give Satchel a right arm, he gave him a whip.” It was also very durable, even when the rest of Satchel’s body was failing him, he could still get quality batters out.

 His story is one of triumph and sadness, the sports world is a better place for his having been a part of it. Yet, it is hard to accurately project how many records he would have held if he had been allowed to play in the major leagues when he was 20. Given his skills and durability, regularly running up 30 wins a season is very possible. As it was, he was still pitching at a quality level in his mid-forties.

 This is a great book about a great player that was forced to play outside of the best circles. Some argue that the reason it took so long for major league baseball to integrate is because the white players knew that they would be outclassed by the blacks from the Negro leagues, especially Satchel. Another major point made is that some of the owners opposed integration on financial grounds. They made a lot of money leasing their stadiums to the Negro leagues and they understood that integration would dry up that particular cash cow.

 While Satch was no angel, his right arm was the closest to heavenly as human flesh can get.

Review of "The National League: A History," by Joel Zoss and John S. Bowman

 Review of

The National League: A History, by Joel Zoss and John S. Bowman ISBN 083176757x

Five out of five stars

Entertaining history of the “senior circuit.”

 The National League of major league baseball traces its’ roots back to 1876, when it was called the National League of Professional Baseball Clubs. The United States had emerged from the Civil War and baseball was a game that the soldiers played for recreation and exercise. The nation was also transitioning to a more urban demographic, providing more population centers that could support professional teams. The American League was founded 25 years later, and the National League is the world’s oldest extant professional team sports league.

 Many of the greatest players, managers and owners have been a part of the National League and it was in the National League that the first black man played in the major leagues in the twentieth century. This is their story, and like all long stories, there are many great moments and some that were not so great.

 Some of the worst moments came in Jackie Robinson’s rookie year with the Brooklyn Dodgers. Ironically, and even Robinson admitted this, he was not the best player in the Negro leagues, just the best choice for the process of integration.

 The cast of characters that played and coached in the National League runs from substance abusers, takers of performance enhancing drugs to gamblers to men that just loved the game. In some men, they covered more than one of these bases. This is their story, a sequential look at the oldest continually operating professional sports league.

Sunday, June 19, 2022

Review of "American League Baseball Card Classics: 82 Collector’s Cards Authentically Reproduced in Full Color," by Burt Randolph Sugar

 Review of

American League Baseball Card Classics: 82 Collector’s Cards Authentically Reproduced in Full Color, by Burt Randolph Sugar

Five out of five stars

Great reproduction of some classic cards

 If you cannot own the original card, owning these reproductions is a reasonable approximation. Many of the cards feature Hall-of-Fame players and the range covers many of the ways the cards were produced.

 There are Cracker Jack Ball Players, Piedmont cigarettes, Big League Chewing Gum, Play Ball, Diamond Stars, Baseball Picture Cards and Topps. The cards are perforated on the edges, so they can easily be removed without risk of being damaged.

 Leafing through this book of 82 cards, the reader is taken back through the history of baseball as well as the trading cards that document it.

Saturday, June 18, 2022

Review of "Bob Turley’s Pitching Secrets," by Robert Lee Turley

 Review of

Bob Turley’s Pitching Secrets, by Robert Lee Turley

Four out of five stars

Not exactly secrets, just basic advice for young pitchers

 Although the ways in which pitchers are used are quite different from the mid sixties when this book was published, the basic advice has not aged. Turley was a moderately successful major league pitcher with over 100 career wins and a Cy Young Award. Therefore, he certainly knows how to pitch at the major league level.

 The advice in this book is meant for the developing young pitcher. It is based on learning control first, and then working on speed and pitches that bend. He opposes young pitchers working on specialty pitches such as the knuckleball. Turley stresses physical fitness, avoiding alcohol and tobacco and getting a great deal of healthful sleep. He also stresses that it is counterproductive to get upset and angry when things do not go well. Which they will inevitably do at times.

 A book on how to succeed in baseball that has not aged, this is something that all young pitchers can read and derive value from.

Thursday, June 16, 2022

Review of "George III: Mad or Maligned?" An A & E biography video

 Review of

George III: Mad or Maligned? An A & E biography video

Five out of five stars

A more honest perspective of George III

 In the United States, children are taught that the war of independence against Great Britain was due to the tyrannical practices of King George III as well as a Parliament that placed onerous taxes on the colonies. Both of these positions are incorrect, the actions of Parliament were thoroughly reasonable, given the British war debt. In fact the British population was more heavily taxed and they were united in believing that the colonists should pay their “fair share.” George was in fact no way a tyrant, being extremely frugal in his personal finances and subject more to the will of elected representatives than other monarchs. While he eventually went mad, that had little to do with governmental practices leading to the war.

 One underlying theme that runs through the tape is the knowledge that the British people were not enamored of their monarchs until the nineteenth century. George III was not popular until he started suffering from his illness, raising the interesting point that it took acts of madness to make him popular. I was also not aware that George may have been married and a father before he married the woman that was his queen. From the perspective of historical accuracy, hopefully some day DNA analysis will determine if that was indeed the case.

 The American history books reflect a cultural bias when they paint George III as a despot who ground down the colonists with a heavy burden until they could bear it no more. Other than his mental illness, he was a reasonable monarch, and he deeply regretted the loss of the American colonies. I enjoyed this tape, seeing sides of George that I never knew before. I would like to see this tape being shown to children in American history classes so that they can see that history is often interpreted rather than factual.




Wednesday, June 15, 2022

Review of "Sports Titans of the 20th Century," by Al Silverman

 Review of

Sports Titans of the 20th Century, by Al Silverman

Four out of five stars

Should be “first half of 20th century”

 This book is very typical of the short biographies of major sports figures that were written before the “tell all” premise took hold. The biographies are largely laudatory in nature, although they do mention on-field failures as well as a bit of the dirty laundry. Furthermore, the title really should be “Sports Titans of the First Half of the 20th Century.”

 The people featured in the book are:

*) Jim Thorpe

*) Babe Ruth

*) Jim Brown

*) Jack Dempsey

*) Bob Cousy

*) Babe Didrikson Zaharias

*) Ty Cobb

*) Maurice Richard

*) Willie Mays

*) Jesse Owens

*) Bill Tilden

*) Red Grange

 No one can plausibly dispute that all 12 of these people were titans in their field of sports. In the cases of Babe Ruth and Red Grange, they literally made their sports into the mass phenomena that they became. The others also made major changes in their fields of endeavor.

 A book of sports history, this is a book that takes the reader back to a time when sports were popular, but nowhere near the financial powerhouse they are now.

Saturday, June 11, 2022

Review of "Wonder Woman," DVD starring Gal Gadot

 Review of

Wonder Woman, DVD starring Gal Gadot

Five out of five stars

Different first story of Wonder Woman

 The original story of Wonder Woman (Princess Diana) had her entering the world of humans during World War II and fighting the Axis powers. In this case, the plane piloted by Steve Trevor that crashes in Amazon territory is a German plane that he stole from the Central Powers in World War I. German forces follow the plane and engage in a battle with the Amazonians. Determined to return to his military duties, Steve Trevor convinces Diana that he needs to leave and contrary to their laws, she goes with him.

 Together, they search for Ares, the god of war that Diana is convinced is the driving force keeping the war going. In order to blend in, Diana must adopt more modest clothing and tone down her forceful personality. This generates some humorous moments, one must remember that this is the second decade of the twentieth century, before women could even vote and had few other rights.

 Aided by a bizarre cast of fellow soldiers, Steve Trevor leads his band with Diana in search of the German leader Ludendorff. Diana is convinced that Ludendorff is Ares in human form. Moving behind the lines to a secret military research facility, Trevor’s commandos strive to destroy the German superweapons, which is a deadly gas against which the standard gas masks are useless.

 The battle is ferocious with intense and detailed special effects being used to depict widespread destruction when the superpowered beings unleash their powers against each other in one-on-one combat. Which is of course standard action in the modern superhero movie.  

 Depicted as a very powerful being, Wonder Woman is capable of taking on male gods and defeating them. Fortunately, Steve Trevor does not act like a man of that era, yet the members of the British government do. Diana’s appearance in government chambers is met with intense disapproval. In that way, the movie manages to depict both the earlier and modern eras, which is in keeping with the reason for the creation of the character of Wonder Woman.

Friday, June 10, 2022

Review of "Star Trek #1," by Mike Johnson and Stephen Molnar

 Review of

Star Trek #1, by Mike Johnson and Stephen Molnar, comic by IDW

Five out of five stars

A remake of the original series “Where No Man Has Gone Before.”

 One of the earliest and best episodes of the Star Trek original series was, “Where No Man Has Gone Before.” In it, the Enterprise encounters an energy barrier that kills some of the crew and leaves others altered. Most specifically, James Kirk’s best friend at the academy Gary Mitchell. He is somehow endowed with fantastic powers, using the terminology of “SNG: The Next Generation” he becomes somewhat of a Q. However, he does not have the self-control or understanding needed to wield such power.

 This comic is the first in a series that is a rewrite of that episode using the players of the reboot that stars Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Karl Urban et. al. The story in this comic follows the plot of the episode very well and ends with Gary Mitchell in sick bay with his powers rapidly increasing. The last caption has Spock telling Kirk, “Kill him while you can.”

 This is a great story about friendship lost and what would likely happen if a human were ever to gain true superpowers. While this comic is a retelling of a story well known to Star Trek fans, and a topic of other books and movies, it retains the power to keep you riveted.

Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Review of "Boneyard, Volume 1," by Richard Moore


Review of

Boneyard, Volume 1, by Richard Moore, ISBN  9781561633166

Five out of five stars

Kept my attention, not sure why

 There are some books that you read that just keep your attention and you are not really sure why. It isn’t really the depth of the story or the power of the dialog or even the eye-catching nature of the images. This story is in the category mentioned in the first sentence and fits all of the criteria listed in the second. Michael Paris is a rather ordinary single man on his way to the remote town of Raven Hollow. His eccentric grandfather recently died and left him a small plot in the town. Michael has never seen it and has no interest in it so he is going there to sign the papers so that the city can buy it from him.

 However, when his car breaks down he hitches a ride and has to walk the last segment. When he arrives he finds the townsfolk carrying torches and being whipped into a fever pitch with the goal being to go to Michael’s property and burn the tenants out. The property that he has inherited is a graveyard and it is inhabited by a collection of lovable monsters. They are largely from typical monster stock but with notable exceptions. The vampire is a lovely girl named Abbey that promises she won’t bite; there is a skeleton, a wisecracking black bird and a creature similar to that from the black lagoon that is female with barely covered large breasts. She also has the hots for Michael, which is a bit of a problem, as her husband is a behemoth that would dwarf the wrestler Andre the Giant.

 Michael generally takes it all in stride, except after he tries to pull Abbey from the path of a car and only succeeds in pulling off her top. At that point he protests a great deal about what he wasn’t really gawking at. The idea of a man verbally stumbling over seeing the breasts of a good-looking female vampire is very amusing.

 The story has so many slightly humorous moments and they are so synergistically compatible that the end result is a very good story. Some points were so memorable that I had to go back and read them again when I was writing this review.

Sunday, June 5, 2022

Review of "The Bobby Richardson Story," by Bobby Richardson

Review of

 The Bobby Richardson Story, by Bobby Richardson

 Four out of five stars

 An underappreciated Yankee great

  Unlike most sports autobiographies, this book is not filled with anecdotes and points of remembrance about games they were involved in. Richardson was a devout Christian during his entire career, so there are many references to that faith and fewer notes about major events in his career.

 Furthermore, the book was written before the major work “Ball Four”, which made it acceptable to write about the reality of baseball life, although Richardson does occasionally mention the temptations. Therefore, in many ways the modern reader will find the book dull when compared to the tell-all aspects of the sports books of the last thirty years. Nevertheless, there was much to admire about Richardson, he was a sound player, both on the field and at the plate and his role in the dominant Yankee teams of his era is often overlooked. His life was a good and honest one, often a rarity among modern athletes.

Review of "The Autopsy of Jane Doe," DVD version

 Review of

The Autopsy of Jane Doe, DVD version

Five out of five stars

Great direction with minimal gore

 The outstanding feature of this horror film is the direction. In all cases there is the appropriate pause of a second or two that allows the tension to build in the mind of the viewer. A secondary positive feature is that there is a minimum of gore. In so many modern horror movies, the director seems to believe that adding excess blood and gore is the way to create tension.

 The premise is also an interesting one. A family is found brutally murdered and there is the body of a young, naked female partially buried in the basement. Since her body appears uninjured, the sheriff has it transported to the local medical examiner. It is a several generations family run business that is also a small-town funeral home. The sheriff gives the owner a request that he expedite the autopsy, even to the point of working all night.

 The owner and his son begin work and it quickly leaves the track of being routine. They discover that her wrists and ankles are broken, and her tongue was cut out. They also find soot in her lungs and peat under her fingernails. At this point, the supernatural steps in.

 Fighting to regain control of the situation and to understand what is happening to them and their environment, the father and son remain rational. However, that is impossible given the forces arrayed against them and they soon drift in and out of what are induced periods of psychoses. However, in many cases the viewer is uncertain as to whether the action is real or only imagined.

 This is a great horror film it keeps you on the edge of your seat and has a conclusion that is equally as chilling. There is great power for evil in that naked body and not all of it is expressed.

Saturday, June 4, 2022

Review of "Simpsons Comics Madness," by Matt Groening et. al.

 Review of

Simpsons Comics Madness, by Matt Groening et. al. ISBN  9780060530617

Five out of five stars

Madness is the appropriate term

 This collection of stories featuring the most famous animated family is wild, with some of the best puns, wordplay and unusual non-sequitur situations in literature. Although the dialog expresses the stupid, it is clear that there is a great deal of intelligence behind it. When Bart is called Richie Rich by one character, the other antagonistic character says, “Yeah, why don’t you and Cadbury the butler go see Little Lulu.” This is a mixed reference to other comic characters that is quickly corrected by reference to the specific publishers of the referenced comics.

 Although it is a graphic novel and can be read fast, it is best to go slow through the pages. For if you go fast, you will likely miss some of the best references to events and actions outside the specific story. For example, when he mounts his steed, Uter, the German man in traditional dress shouts, “Hi-ho lederhosen away!” Very funny. There is also the pet equivalent of “American Idol.”

 Mindless, yet intelligent, this is a book that will have you smiling and thinking as you read your way through the dense dialog and dissect the meaning.

Review of "The Tree Army: A Pictorial History of the Civilian Conservation Corps, 1933-1942," by Stan Cohen

 Review of

The Tree Army: A Pictorial History of the Civilian Conservation Corps, 1933-1942, by Stan Cohen, ISBN 0933126115

Five out of five stars

History of one of the best New Deal programs

 When Franklin Roosevelt assumed in presidency in 1933, the United States was in terrible economic shape. Unemployment was at roughly 25% with others underemployed and even people that were working had experienced a decline in wages. There was little demand for almost everything but the essentials, and something had to be done.

 The Roosevelt administration expanded existing programs and created many new ones in an attempt to uplift the country. As is the case with any rapid action by the federal government, some of those programs were more successful than others. The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) was one of the most effective and it served to train hundreds of thousands of men in skills that would be needed in order for the United States to win the Second World War.

 This is the story of the CCC, told mostly in pictures. Men signed up for a semi-military work program. They were housed in barracks, rousted out of bed at an early time, shuffled off to meals at the designated times and were assigned specific work details. What is not often pointed out about the CCC is that training the men in specific skills was also a part of their regimen. Many of the men had limited schooling and this was an opportunity to receive valuable training, much of which was used in their subsequent military experience.

 Many of the parks, trails, buildings and erosion control projects that the CCC created are still in use today. The CCC is an example of infrastructure and human investment by the federal government that has reaped dividends several times that of the original expenditure. It is a government agency that should be the subject of more study.

Friday, June 3, 2022

Review of "Best Science Fiction Stories of Clifford D. Simak," by Clifford D. Simak

 Review of

Best Science Fiction Stories of Clifford D. Simak, by Clifford D. Simak

Five out of five stars

Stories of intelligence about what might be

 When great science fiction writers are mentioned, Clifford D. Simak is often and unfortunately relegated to an asterisk or footnote. I have always been very impressed by his writing and as the title implies, this book contains his best. The stories in the collection are:

*) Founding Father

*) Immigrant

*) New Folks’ Home

 *) Crying Jag

*) All the Traps on Earth

*) Lulu

*) Neighbor

My favorite is “Neighbor”, as story about a simple farming community in the eastern United States where a new family called the Heath’s move into an empty and neglected farm. In true rural tradition the Heath’s stick to their business and remake the farm into a model. Their crops grow well and they raise a large vegetable garden that contains some types of vegetables never seen before.

 Other odd things start happening, the weather starts to be ideal, with rain coming right when it is needed and never too much. The people start getting and staying healthier and this draws the attention of the government. Being farmers, the other people are dubious and use their natural insular nature to protect their “new” and now cherished neighbors. It is a simple and basic story about acceptance.

 Simak is truly one of the lesser masters of science fiction in the 1950’s and these stories demonstrate that fact. They are clean, have some depth of substance and have aged very well.

Review of "Baseball Legends #12: Billy Martin"

 Review of

Baseball Legends #12: Billy Martin, comic by Revolutionary Comics

Four out of five stars

Captures his fiery, unstable personality

 Baseball attracts all personalities, some of which have fiery and unstable personalities. Properly channeled, these characteristics can make the player driven to succeed, even when their skills for the game are not the highest. Billy Martin was such a man.

 This comic is an interesting depiction of his life, from his relationship to his unstable mother to how he interacted with his on-field coaches and managers. His was a volatile life, a legend more for his fighting with so many people in different positions, both in and out of baseball. His track record as a manager was impressive, at least in his first couple of years in a job. However, that initial success was nearly always a flame-out, where his teams dropped off rapidly.

 One of the most interesting characters in baseball, largely due to what he did while not playing the game, Billy Martin tended to antagonize everyone he encountered. This comic captures that personality.

Wednesday, June 1, 2022

Review of "Moneyball," by Michael Lewis

 Review of

Moneyball, by Michael Lewis, ISBN 0393324818

Five out of five stars

The truth about winning baseball

 No person has done more to change the perception of how people are actually performing in a sport than Bill James in baseball. Yet, no one has been ignored more in the baseball establishment than James. His development of the statistical science he termed sabermetrics allowed people studying baseball to better evaluate the performance of the players in an objective manner. Using statistical methods that most fans can understand, James and his followers prove in the statistical sense that time honored tactics such as the stolen base and sacrifice bunt are generally counterproductive.

 Few executives in major league baseball took these new evaluation tactics seriously. One that did, largely because they could not compete in the financial sense, was Billy Beane, the general manager of the Oakland Athletics. Despite having a payroll that was dwarfed by that of nearly all other teams, the Athletics won more games over many seasons than most of the big spenders.

 This is his story and how Beane and his small group of data minders looked for players that were relatively cheap and performed to their models of performance. To the leadership of the Athletics, on base percentage was the greatest single determiner of offensive performance. Giving away the precious currency of outs by getting caught stealing or executing a sacrifice bunt were considered unacceptable.

 This is one of the best nonfiction baseball books ever written. Despite the high level of success of the Athletics during the years covered by this book, there are still many in baseball that do not accept the James/Beane approach to the game. Some express outright hostility to their approach. In many ways it is kind of silly, for the James/Beane approach is the only foreseeable way in which the smaller market teams will ever be able to compete with those with the deepest of pockets.