Baseball, Steroids, and How the Game has Changed Over the Past Two Generations

1st Edition - October 27, 2021

Write a review

  • Author: Gabriel Costa
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780128223451
  • eBook ISBN: 9780128223468

Purchase options

Purchase options
In Stock
DRM-free (PDF, EPub)
Sales tax will be calculated at check-out

Institutional Subscription

Free Global Shipping
No minimum order


Sabermetrics: Baseball, Steroids, and How the Game has Changed Over the Past Two Generations offers an introduction to this increasing area of interest to statisticians, students of the game, and many others. Pairing a primer on the applied math with an overview of the origin of the field and its context within baseball today, the work provides an engaging resource for students and interested readers. It includes coverage of relevant baseball history, Bill James and SABR, broken records and steroids. Drawing on the author’s experience teaching the subject at Seton Hall University since 1988, Sabermetrics also offers practice questions and solutions for class use.

Key Features

  • Provides an accessible, brief introduction to the practice of sabermetrics
  • Approaches the topic in context with recent trends and issues in baseball
  • Includes questions and solutions for math practice


Students at the undergraduate / early graduate level in this emerging course. Researchers/Professionals, General public

Table of Contents

  • Cover image
  • Title page
  • Table of Contents
  • Copyright
  • Dedication
  • Preface
  • About the Contributors
  • Chapter 1. An appreciation of baseball and its mathematics
  • Chapter outline
  • Baseball’s popularity
  • Baseball in my own heart and mind
  • Baseball: an amazing sport with plentiful data
  • Baseball: a game with wonderful statistics
  • Baseball: a business with huge egos and a desire for profits
  • Baseball as entertainment
  • Recreational fun
  • Baseball as a developer of teamwork and fitness in youth
  • Baseball as a major cultural influencer
  • America’s national pastime
  • The future of baseball
  • Problems to consider
  • References
  • Chapter 2. Is baseball still the national pastime?
  • Chapter outline
  • Introduction
  • America’s love affair starts
  • The 1920s
  • The 1930s
  • The 1940s
  • The 1950s
  • The 1960s
  • The 1970s
  • The 1980s
  • The 1990s (the steroid era begins to bloom)
  • The 21st century
  • References
  • Chapter 3. Baseball before steroids
  • Chapter Outline
  • The Dead Ball Era
  • The 1920s
  • The 1930s
  • The 1940s
  • The 1950s
  • The 1960s
  • The 1970s
  • The 1980s
  • Conclusion
  • References
  • Chapter 4. Bill James and the genesis of sabermetrics
  • Abstract
  • Chapter outline
  • Range factor
  • Hall of Fame, part 1
  • Hall of Fame, part 2
  • Hall of Fame, part 3
  • Hall of Fame, part 4
  • Hall of Fame, part 5
  • Hall of Fame, part 6
  • Hall of Fame, part 7
  • Works cited
  • Chapter 5. Rattling the sabermetrics
  • Chapter outline
  • Batter up!
  • Playing catch
  • On the mound
  • Take me out to the ball game
  • Rounding third and heading for home
  • Sidebar 1: the most valuable statistic?
  • Sidebar 2: stats and steroids, taken together
  • References
  • Chapter 6. The annihilation of records: where have you gone, Babe Ruth?
  • Chapter outline
  • The greatest to ever swing a bat
  • Ruth’s statistics
  • A hall of fame pitcher?
  • A home run hitter
  • Setting the home run records
  • Some split statistics
  • Combining leaderboards
  • The cumulative home run ratio
  • Master of the extra-base hit
  • Ruth and wins above replacement
  • Breaking Ruth’s records
  • Can science explain the stats?
  • Chapter problems
  • Solutions to chapter problems
  • Chapter 7. Steroids, etc.
  • Chapter Outline
  • Conclusion
  • Chapter 8. Scandal scarred: a discussion of our national pastime’s controversial history
  • Chapter outline
  • First inning: does the Hit King’s Hall of Fame punishment fit the crime?
  • Second inning: did major league baseball get the all-century team right?
  • Third inning: was this the trade of the century?
  • Fourth inning: was segregation the greatest mlb scandal of all?
  • Fifth inning: was Marge Schott an anomaly or emblematic of cincinnati reds baseball culture?
  • Sixth inning: was the 1919 world series fix a foreshadowing of the future?
  • Seventh inning: do the St. Louis Cardinals bear some responsibility for baseball’s sign stealing scandal?
  • Eighth inning: was the Astros’ sign stealing chicanery the worst scandal since segregation?
  • Ninth inning: can baseball ultimately reclaim its soul?
  • References
  • Chapter 9. The last inning
  • Chapter Outline
  • The evolution of baseball statistics
  • Changing the rules
  • The elusive competitive advantage
  • Always an asterisk
  • Technology, new rules, and the “footballization” of baseball
  • The role of incomplete seasons
  • The final out
  • References
  • Chapter 10. Epilogue: Where have we been? Where do we go from here? A final word from the editor
  • Index

Product details

  • No. of pages: 224
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Academic Press 2022
  • Published: October 27, 2021
  • Imprint: Academic Press
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780128223451
  • eBook ISBN: 9780128223468

About the Author

Gabriel Costa

Gabriel B. Costa is currently a visiting professor at the United States Military Academy at West Point and is on the faculty at Seton Hall. And is an engineer. He holds many titles and fills them with distinction. He has a B.S., M.S. and Ph.D. in Mathematics from Stevens Institute of Technology. He has also co-authored another Academic Press book with Richard Bronson, Matrix Methods.

Affiliations and Expertise

Visiting Professor, Department of Mathematical Sciences, United States Military Academy, West Point, NY, USA

Ratings and Reviews

Write a review

There are currently no reviews for "Sabermetrics"