George William James
statistician, Red Sox executive
George William James is a baseball writer, historian, and statistician whose work has been widely influential. Since 1977, James has written more than two dozen books devoted to baseball history and statistics. His approach, which he termed "sabermetrics" in reference to the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR), scientifically analyzes and studies baseball, often through the use of statistical data, in an attempt to determine why teams win and lose. In 2006, Time named him in the Time 100 as one of the most influential people in the world. He is currently a Senior Advisor on Baseball Operations for the Boston Red Sox. After four years at the University of Kansas residing at Stephenson Scholarship hall, and one course short of graduating, James joined the Army in 1971. James was the last person in Kansas to be drafted for the Vietnam war, although he never saw action there. Instead, he spent two years stationed in South Korea, during which time he wrote to KU about taking his final class. He was told he actually had met all his graduation requirements, so he returned to Lawrence in 1973 with degrees in English and economics. He also finished an Education degree in 1975, likewise from the University of Kansas.