Jim & Bob's Palatial Baseball Blog

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Knowledge and BS

Rich Lederer at The Baseball Analysts (I just discovered the site and think it's fab -- it's well worth your time) has been conducting some conversations with ESPN's Buster Olney over whether or not Jim Rice is a Hall of Famer.

In his post, Rich goes back to the archives for this quote from Bill James' 1985 Baseball Abstract:

Virtually all sportswriters, I suppose, believe that Jim Rice is an outstanding player. If you ask them how they know this, they'll tell you that they just know; I've seen him play. That's the difference in a nutshell between knowledge and bullshit; knowledge is something that can be objectively demonstrated to be true, and bullshit is something that you just "know." If someone can actually demonstrate that Jim Rice is a great ballplayer, I'd be most interested to see the evidence.

Well said, Mr. James.

No, I'm not just cracking on Rice -- feel free to extrapolate that into a universal truth.

As Yogi Berra once famously said, in baseball, you don't know nothin'. So don't believe what the guys at ESPN tell you, or what you hear on the sports radio call-in shows, or whatever scripts the guys at the Tribune Tower are typing out that day. Or, for that matter, whatever Jim and I are going about here.

Do the research and find out for yourself. Nothing wrong with delving through the archives...

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