Scouting and Scoring: How We Know What We Know about Baseball

An in-depth look at the intersection of judgment and statistics in baseball


$19.95 / £14.99
Published (US):
Mar 30, 2021
Published (UK):
Apr 20, 2021
5.5 x 8.5 in.
15 b/w illus.
Buy This

Scouting and scoring are considered fundamentally different ways of ascertaining value in baseball. Scouting seems to rely on experience and intuition, scoring on performance metrics and statistics. In Scouting and Scoring, Christopher Phillips rejects these simplistic divisions. He shows how both scouts and scorers rely on numbers, bureaucracy, trust, and human labor to make sound judgments about the value of baseball players. Tracing baseball’s story from the nineteenth century to today, Phillips explains that the sport was one of the earliest fields to introduce numerical analysis, and new methods of data collection were supposed to enable teams to replace scouting with scoring. But that’s not how things turned out. From the invention of official scorers and Statcast to the creation of the Major League Scouting Bureau, Scouting and Scoring reveals the inextricable connections between human expertise and data science, and offers an entirely fresh understanding of baseball.

Awards and Recognition

  • Winner of a SABR Baseball Research Award, Society for American Baseball Research
  • Finalist for the CASEY Award for Best Baseball Book of the Year, Spitball Magazine