Nov 23, 2011

How to Manage a Baseball Team in the Big League: My Impression of the Movie "Moneyball"

I watched the movie "Moneyball" last weekend. I enjoyed this movie, mainly because I've devoted myself to Major League Baseball. (Of course I've read the original book "Moneyball" and I wrote a journal about it.)  

In addition, I could really understand what Belly Beane, who was a leading character of this movie, wanted to do.

I became one of the managers of my company this August. The main role of managers is maximizing the performance of the team under many restrictions.

Belly Beane is a general manager of Oakland Athletics, which is much poorer than big teams, such as New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox. These teams buy star players of Athletics, but Belly Beane can't stop them. The restriction that he faces is money.

I have many restrictions to manage my team. I have no right to select the members of my team. I have to manage given members. It's the biggest restriction.

Belly Beane thought that Athletics couldn't beat Yankees, even if a poor team kept doing the same thing as a rich team. So he changed his approach and began to use findings of sabermetrics (statistical analysis about baseball). Many his staffs resisted his change, but he stuck to his belief.

I'm trying to change my predecessor's approaches, and sometimes I come across resistance. But if I wanted to make my team more efficient, I should break it down.

In this movie Belly Beane always talked straight about what he thought of. I also want to and try to talk straight. But all of my colleagues don't talk straight and sometimes we can't discuss enough. I wonder if the person, Belly Beane, talk straight or business people in the U.S. talk straight.


  1. Interesting perspective to adapt issues regarding the management of a baseball team to the management of a corporate team. I might be able to do the same :)

  2. I follow your blog with interest, especially when you write about books, languages, Japanese culture.
    Today I've started my own blog on books and films, I would be happy if you had a look at it sometimes. :)
    (I've only written one post so far, I still feel somehow awkward, but I hope I will improve)
    the title refers to a one of my favorite books, "be my knife" by David Grossman.
    Thank you for your attention!