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As a public service, I'd like to inform young local baseball fans of a fantastic opportunity: an internship with the forward-thinking Oakland A's (the subject of Moneyball by Mr. Tabitha Soren, Michael Lewis). Do tell your friends, particularly econ majors, math whizzes, and 1337 programmers:
- Candidates must be proficient in all Microsoft Office programs (especially Excel).
- Proficiency in statistical packages, such as Stata, SAS, and SPSS is a plus.
- Knowledge of scripting languages (Perl, Python) for screen-scraping programming is a major plus.
"Screen-scraping programming" refers to the practice of automatically extracting specific data from Web pages and similar files; perhaps the A's are developing the MLB equivalent of Carnivore, which would be the greatest thing ever. J.C. Bradbury, who runs the Baseball Economist Web site where I found this, got the tip from A's economist (!) Farhan Zaidi; there's a good interview with Zaidi at Bradbury's site.
This in particular goes out to my fellow Maroons, inheritors of a long tradition that begins with the late Doug Pappas and continues with Baseball Prospectus folks like Nate Silver and Christina Kahrl. We're terrible at sports, but that doesn't mean we don't want to take them over. (Side note: the last halfway decent baseball player to attend the University of Chicago, SF Giants draftee and former minor leaguer Mark Mosier, is now a clerk for Supreme Court chief justice John Roberts. Stay in school, kids!)
Watch your back, though: Tufts University is offering Sabermetrics 101 this year.