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#pounditSaturday, August 8, 2020

Nats GM Mike Rizzo boycotts ‘Moneyball,’ says it makes baseball people look stupid

Since the movie “Moneyball” first came out, reviews have been very mixed. Some casual viewers like it while others thought it was nothing special. Former A’s manager Art Howe was unhappy with the way the movie depicted him, and other baseball people find it to be inaccurate. Nationals GM Mike Rizzo is one of those people.

According to Adam Kilgore of the Washington Post, Rizzo gave the following reason for boycotting the movie: “It depicts baseball people as dummies who sit in a room and spit tobacco and say stupid things.”

L.B. already gave you his take on the Best Picture-nominated film, and I agree with most of his analysis. The movie intentionally neglects to talk about superstars like Miguel Tejada and Barry Zito and has some factual inaccuracies. That being said, I disagree with Rizzo that it makes baseball people look stupid. If anything, I thought it was the exact opposite.

To a general audience, Billy Beane is depicted as a badass who defied the odds and put together a winning team when everyone told him he was insane. Not only was he depicted as a visionary, but scenes like the one where he puts Jeremy Giambi in his place make him look like the man.┬áBy leaving out names like Tejada, Zito, Eric Chavez, Mark Mulder, and Tim Hudson, the makers of the film made it look like Beane put together a playoff team with literally no stars. So he spit some tobacco — big deal.

What Beane was able to accomplish in 2002 was truly remarkable, and I think the movie did a good job — perhaps even too good — of showing that. Sure, it made trades and transactions sound a lot more simple than they actually are, but those things are a must for cinema value. I’m not really sure how Rizzo got the impression that it makes baseball people look like idiots.

H/T Hardball Talk
Photo credit: Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE

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