Page 1 2 THE NOVEL
[just before the first game of the season is about to begin]
Billy Beane: I’m goin’ in. Text me play by play.
Peter Brand: Wait! What?
Billy Beane: I don’t watch the games.
[after losing the first game of the season]
Billy Beane: I should have made you a bigger part of the conversation from day one. That way we’d be clear what we’re trying to do here. That was my mistake, Art, and I take responsibility for that.
Art Howe: What are you trying to say?
Billy Beane: I’m saying it doesn’t matter what moves I make if you don’t play the team the way they’re designed to be played.
Art Howe: Billy, you’re out of your depth.
Billy Beane: Why not Hatteberg at first?
Art Howe: Because he can’t play first.
Billy Beane: How do you know?
Art Howe: It’s not my first baseball game. Scott Hatteberg can’t hit, he’s keeping us in the fences.
Billy Beane: Could this be about your contract?
Art Howe: No. This is about you doing your job and me doing mine. Mine’s being left alone to manage this team you assembled for me.
Billy Beane: I didn’t assemble it for you, Art.
Art Howe: No shit.
Billy Beane: Good meeting. Every time we talk, I’m reinvigorated by my love of the game.
[on the radio]
Call-In Radio Host: Grady, can you interpret for us what’s going on?
Grady Fuson: They call it Moneyball.
Call-In Radio Host: Moneyball?
Grady Fuson: Yes. And it was a nice theory and now it’s just not working out.
Sports Announcer: Billy Beane has built this team on the ideas of a guy named Bill James.
Call-In Radio Host: Right.
Sports Announcer: He wrote an interesting book on baseball statistics. The problem is that Bill James never played, never managed, he was in fact a security guard at a pork and beans company.
Call-In Radio Host: Do you see this as a decimation of the whole team?
Grady Fuson: I think that he bought a ticket on the Titanic.
Sports Announcer: Oh, boy! He’s tried to come up with a new approach, my hat’s off to him. It won’t work.
Billy Beane: I want you to go on the road with the team.
Peter Brand: You don’t go on the road with the team.
Billy Beane: That’s why I want you to do it.
Peter Brand: Why don’t you?
Billy Beane: I can’t develop personal relationships with these guys. I gotta be able to trade ’em, send ’em down, sometimes cut them. Which is something you should learn to do, by the way.
Peter Brand: I would never have to cut a player, unless you…
[Bean’s puts his hand up]
Peter Brand: Oh, come on!
Billy Beane: Come on, what? Let’s practice.
Peter Brand: No.
Billy Beane: Yeah, I’m a player and you gotta cut me from the roster. Go.
Peter Brand: No!
Billy Beane: What do you mean ‘no’?
Peter Brand: No!
Billy Beane: Do it.
Peter Brand: This is stupid.
Billy Beane: Part of the job, man.
[playing the part of having to cut a player with Billy pretending to be a player]
Peter Brand: Billy, please have a seat. I need to talk you to for a minute
Billy Beane: Go on.
Peter Brand: You’ve been a huge part of this team, but sometimes you have to make decisions that are best for the team. I’m sure you can understand that.
Billy Beane: You’re cutting me.
Peter Brand: I’m really sorry.
Billy Beane: I just bought a house here.
Peter Brand: Well…
Billy Beane: You know?
Peter Brand: Oh, uh…well…
Billy Beane: Well…? Well! That’s all you got to say? My kids just started a new school, they made friends
Peter Brand: That’s uh…well, you shouldn’t pull ’em out in the middle of the school year. You should wait.
Billy Beane: What the hell are you talking about?
Peter Brand: I don’t know! I don’t know! I shouldn’t…I’m not gonna do this. I don’t think that…this is stupid. I’m not gonna fire anybody and this is dumb!
Billy Beane: They’re professional ball players. Just be straight with them. No fluff, just facts. ‘Pete, I gotta let you go. Jack’s office will handle the details.’
Peter Brand: That’s it?
[Billy does a silent hand movement of cutting off the head]
Peter Brand: Really?
Billy Beane: Would you rather get a bullet to the head, or fire to the chest or bleed to death?
Peter Brand: Are those my only two options?
Billy Beane: Go on the road with the team.
Peter Brand: Okay.
[on the plane Peter is traveling with the team sat next to Justice]
David Justice: How come your boss doesn’t travel with the team?
Peter Brand: He doesn’t like to mingle with players.
David Justice: Is that supposed to make it easier to cut?
Peter Brand: I don’t…I don’t know.
David Justice: And how come soda is a dollar in the club house? Cause I’ve never seen it like that.
Peter Brand: Billy likes to keep the money on the field.
David Justice: Soda money? Really? Where on the field is the dollar I’m paying for soda?
Peter Brand: It’s hard to see exactly, but…
David Justice: Yeah.
Peter Brand: …it’s there.
David Justice: It is hard to see. I’m done.
Sports Announcer #1: Well with this loss tonight, the Oakland Athletics have incredibly lost fourteen of their last seventeen games. They are ten games back in the American League West.
Sports Announcer #2: It’s fair to say the experiment has failed.
Billy Beane: Look, Steve, I believe in what we’re doing. I believe the record doesn’t actively reflect the strength of this team or where we’re gonna be at the end of the season. Now, Pete and I here, feel very strongly that we stay on the track we’ve chosen.
Peter Brand: Our sample size has just honestly been too small…
Billy Beane: It’s early. It’s too early. Where do we expect to be by the All Star break?
Peter Brand: Our goal and our expectation is by mid-July to be within seven games first. That would get this working.
Billy Beane: That keeps us in the hunt.
Stephen Schott: By July.
Billy Beane: July.
Stephen Schott: And what’s gonna prevent you from accomplishing that? What are you afraid of?
Billy Beane: Nothing. That’s why we’re here, Steve. That’s why we got a bit of money. That’s all we’re doing.
Casey Beane: Dad, there’s no way you’re gonna lose your job, right?
Billy Beane: What?
Casey Beane: Well, I don’t know. I’m just wondering.
Billy Beane: Where did you hear that?
Casey Beane: Well I go on the internet sometimes.
Billy Beane: Well, don’t do that. Don’t…don’t go on the internet, or watch TV, or read newspapers or talk to…people.
Casey Beane: I don’t talk to people, I just read stuff.
Billy Beane: Honey, everything’s fine. Everything’s fine. Really. You don’t have to worry.
Casey Beane: But if you lose your job we’d have to move away.
Billy Beane: Honey, I’m not gonna lose my job. You don’t have to worry.
Casey Beane: Okay.
Billy Beane: Hey, there’s no problem.
Casey Beane: Okay.
Billy Beane: Right, I got uptown problems, but you’re not a problem at all. You’re not worried, right?
Casey Beane: No, I’m not worried.
[after losing another game the players fool around in the locker room, Billy hears this and goes in and breaks the stereo]
Billy Beane: Is losing fun?
Billy Beane: Is losing fun?
Jeremy Giambi: No.
Billy Beane: What are you having fun for?
[nobody answers, Billy throws a baseball bat across the room, there is complete silence in the room]
Billy Beane: That’s what losing sounds like.
Casey Beane: Are you okay, dad?
Billy Beane: You’re doing it again.
Casey Beane: What?
Billy Beane: You’re worrying about me.
Casey Beane: You have a sad face, dad.
Billy Beane: Do I look worried?
Casey Beane: Yeah.
Billy Beane: Cause you’re getting on an airplane, those things crash all the time. Please stop worrying about your dad.
[they hug and kiss as they stewardess arrives to take Casey to the plane]
Billy Beane: I love you.
Casey Beane: I love you too.
[as she’s leaving]
Billy Beane: You’re dad’s not in trouble.
[as Billy is trying to trade Giambi and Pena]
Peter Brand: Billy, I think you need to take a minute. I think you seriously need to just think about what you’re doing, because you’re upset.
Billy Beane: Okay. What am I missing?
Peter Brand: These are hard rules to explain to people.
Billy Beane: Why is that a problem, Pete?
Peter Brand: Don’t make an emotional decision, Billy.
[to Peter as he takes a call from one of the club owners]
Billy Beane: We’re gonna shake things up.
Peter Brand: Billy, Pena is an All Star. Okay? And if you dump him and this Hatteberg thing doesn’t work out the way that we want it to, you know, this is…this is the kind of decision that gets you fired. It is!
Billy Beane: Yes, you’re right. I may lose my job, in which case I’m a forty four year old guy with a high school diploma and a daughter I’d like to be able to send to college. You’re twenty five years old with a degree from Yale and a pretty impressive apprenticeship. I don’t think we’re asking the right question. I think the question we should be asking is, do you believe in this thing or not?
Peter Brand: I do.
Billy Beane: It’s a problem you think we need to explain ourselves. Don’t. To anyone.
Peter Brand: Okay.
Billy Beane: Now, we’re gonna see this thing through, for better or worse. Just tell me, do you project we’ll win more with Hatteberg or Pena first?
Peter Brand: It’s close, but theoretically Hatteberg.
Billy Beane: What are we talking about then?
Billy Beane: Go tell Pena he’s gotta pack.
Peter Brand: You want me to tell Pena?
Billy Beane: Part of the job.
Peter Brand: What about Giambi? Do you want me to tell too?
Billy Beane: I’ll tell him.
[after Peter and Billy have gotten rid of Pena and Giambi]
Billy Beane: You can’t start Pena first tonight, you’ll have to start Hatteberg.
Art Howe: Yeah, I don’t wanna go through team rounds, Billy. The lineup card is mine. And that’s all, okay?
Billy Beane: The lineup card is definitely yours, I’m just saying you can’t start Pena first.
Art Howe: Well, I am starting him at first.
Billy Beane: I don’t think so, he plays for Detroit now.
[Art looks at him in shock]
Art Howe: You traded Pena?
Billy Beane: Yep. And Menechino, Hiljus, Tam. All been sent down.
Art Howe: You are outside your mind!
Billy Beane: Yep. Cookoo.
Billy Beane: Jeremy’s gone too.
Art Howe: You’re killing this team.
Billy Beane: Art, I can do this all day long.
[Billy walks out of Art’s office and Peter goes to follow him when Art stops him]
Art Howe: Hey, you agreed with this?
Peter Brand: Hundred percent.
[to the team in the locker room]
Billy Beane: Everybody, listen up! You may not look like a winning team, but you are one. So, play like one tonight.
David Justice: I’ve never seen a GM talk to players like that, man.
Billy Beane: You’ve never seen a GM that was a player.
David Justice: No.
Billy Beane: We got a problem, David?
David Justice: No, it’s okay. I know your routine. It’s a pattern, it’s for effect. But it’s for them, alright? That shit ain’t for me.
Billy Beane: Oh, you’re special?
David Justice: You pay me seven million bucks a year, man. So, yeah. Maybe I am a little bit.
Billy Beane: No, man. I ain’t paying you seven. Yankee’s are paying half your salary. That’s what the New York Yankee’s think of you. They’re paying you three and a half million dollars to play against ’em.
David Justice: Where you goin’ with this, Billy?
Billy Beane: David, you’re thirty seven. How about you and I be honest about what each of us want out of this? I wanna milk the last ounce of baseball you got in you and you wanna stay in the show. Let’s do that. I’m not paying you for the player you used to be, I’m paying you for the player you are right now. You’re smart, you get what we’re trying to do here. Make an example for the younger guys, be a leader. Can you do that?
David Justice: Alright. I got you.
Billy Beane: We’re cool?
David Justice: We’re cool.
David Justice: How you liking first base, man?
Scott Hatteberg: It’s uh…it’s coming along, picking it up. You know, tough transition, but I’m feeling…I’m starting to feel better with it.
David Justice: Yeah?
Scott Hatteberg: Yeah.
David Justice: What’s your biggest fear?
Scott Hatteberg: It’s baseball being hit in my general direction.
David Justice: That’s funny. Seriously, what is it?
Scott Hatteberg: No, seriously. That is.
[Scott walks way and David call to him]
David Justice: Well, hey, good luck with that!
Radio Commentator: The Oakland A’s are completely out of hand at the moment. They are an AL best seventeen in for this month, they also took back to back series at Boston and at New York. Remember when they traded Jeremy Giambi to Philly back in June, everyone thought they’d just given up. Actually not so much.
[as the Oakland A’s have moved up to 19 wins and are on proceeding to their 20th, Sharon call Billy]
Sharon: Casey and I are here and we’re watching the game at home, I just wanted to say you did good, Billy. We’re really proud of you.
Billy Beane: I appreciated it, Sharon. Thank you.
Sharon: Good luck.
Billy Beane: Okay.
[talking on the phone]
Casey Beane: Hey, are you on your way to the stadium?
Billy Beane: No, I’m on way to Visalia to see our minor league team.
Casey Beane: Turn around. Please, dad.
Billy Beane: No way Jose!
Casey Beane: Turn around.
Billy Beane: No.
Casey Beane: Come on, dad!
Billy Beane: Not gonna happen.
Casey Beane: You’re not gonna jinx it.
Billy Beane: I’ll talk to you later, sweetheart. I love you.
[after hanging up the phone Billy turns on the radio to hear the scores and immediately decides to turn around and go to the stadium]
[flashback to Billy decided to give up playing baseball]
Billy’s Coach: You wanna give up baseball to become a scout?
Billy Beane: I’m not a baseball player.
Billy’s Coach: Are you sure this is what you want?
[after winning their 20th game in a row]
Billy Beane: It’s hard not to be romantic about baseball. It’s the kind of thing it’s fun for the fans, sells tickets and hot dogs. It doesn’t mean anything.
Peter Brand: Billy, we just won twenty games in a row.
Billy Beane: And what’s the point?
Peter Brand: We just got the record.
Billy Beane: Man, I’ve been doing this for…. Listen, man. I’ve been in this game a long time. I’m not in it for a record, I’ll tell you that. I’m not in it for a ring. That’s when people get hurt. If we don’t win the last game of the series, they’ll dismiss us. I know these guys, I know the way think, and they will erase us. And everything we’ve done here, none of it will matter. Any other team wins the world series, good for them. They’re drinking champagne, they’ll get a ring. But if we win, on our budget with this team, we’ll change the game. And that’s what I want, I want it to mean something.
[after the Oakland A’s lose to the Minnesota Twins]
Radio Commentator: What the Minnesota Twins exposed, is the fact that the Oakland A’s were fundamentally not a sound baseball team. I mean, they had a flawed concept that started with the General Manager and the brain trust over there thinking they could reinvent baseball. You can’t approach baseball from a statistically Beane counter point of view, it’s won on the field with fundamental play. You have to steal, you have to hunt, you have to sacrifice, you gotta get men’s score in position and then you gotta bring ’em in. And you don’t do that with a bunch of statistical gimmicks. Nobody reinvents this game.
[Billy takes a meeting with the owner of the Red Sox]
John: Steve told me he’s offering you a new contract.
Billy Beane: Yes.
John: So why did you return my call?
Billy Beane: Cause it’s the Red Sox. Because I believe science might offer an answer to curse of the Bambino. Because I hear you hired Bill James.
John: Yep. You know, why someone took so long to hire that guy is beyond me.
Billy Beane: Baseball hates him.
John: I know. Baseball…baseball kind of hated me and all. One of the great things about money is that it buys a lot of things. One of which is the luxury to disregard what baseball like, doesn’t like, what baseball think, doesn’t think.
Billy Beane: Yeah, sounds nice.
Billy Beane: Well, I was grateful for the call.
John: You were grateful?
Billy Beane: Yeah.
John: For forty one million, you built a playoff team. You lost Damon, Giambi, Isringhausen, Pena and you won more games without them than you did with them. You won the exact same number of games that the Yankee’s won, but the Yankee’s spent one point four million per win and you paid two hundred and sixty thousand. I know you’ve taken it in the teeth out there, but the first guy through the wall. It always gets bloody, always. It’s the threat and not just the way of doing business, but in their minds it’s threatening the game. But really what it’s threatening is their livelihoods, it’s threatening their jobs, it’s threatening the way that they do things. And every time that happens, whether it’s the government or a way of doing business or whatever it is, the people are holding the reins, have their hands on the switch. They will bet you’re crazy. I mean, anybody who’s not building a team right and rebuilding it using your model, they’re dinosaurs. They’ll be sittin’ on their ass on the sofa in October, watch the Boston Red Sox win the world series.
[he takes out a paper from his coat pocket and puts it in front of Billy]
Billy Beane: What’s this?
John: I want you to be my General Manager. That’s my offer.
[Billy take the paper and reads the offer then looks back in shock at John]
Peter Brand: How was Boston?
Billy Beane: Impressive.
Peter Brand: Did Henry make you a good offer at least?
Billy Beane: Doesn’t matter.
Peter Brand: What was it?
Billy Beane: Doesn’t matter!
What was it?
Billy Beane: It doesn’t matter!
Peter Brand: What was it?
[Billy takes out the paper with the offer written on it and passes to Peter and he reads it]
Peter Brand: Well, at least you got highest paid GM in the history of sports.
Billy Beane: So? So what? You know, I made one decision in my life based on money and I swore I would never do it again.
Peter Brand: You’re not doing it for the money.
Billy Beane: No?
Peter Brand: No. You’re doing it for what the money says and it says, well it says, that any player that makes big money, that they’re worth it.
[looking around at the Oakland A’s locker room]
Billy Beane: What a dump! I really wanted to win here. I really did.
Peter Brand: I think you won pretty big, Billy.
Billy Beane: Pete, we lost. We lost.
Peter Brand: It’s only been a few days. You gotta give yourself some time to get over it.
Billy Beane: You know, I…I don’t get over these things. Ever.
Peter Brand: Come with me to the video room, I wanna show you something.
Billy Beane: No, man, I’m not feeling…right now.
Peter Brand: Come on, Billy. Seriously. Come on, Billy. Come on.
[Peter shows Billy a tape of an Orioles game]
Peter Brand: The Visalia Oaks and our two hundred and forty pounds catcher, Jeremy Brown, who as you know is scared to run to second base. This is in the game six weeks ago. This guy is gonna start him off with a fast ball. Jeremy’s gonna take it in the deep center.
[tape shows Jeremy hitting the ball and starts running and Peter pauses the tape]
Peter Brand: Here’s what’s really interesting. Because Jeremy is gonna do what he never does, he’s gonna go for it. He’s gonna round first and he’s gonna go for it. Okay?
[he starts the tape again and Billy watches it closely]
Peter Brand: This is all Jeremy’s nightmare’s coming to life.
Billy Beane: Ah, they’re laughing at him.
Peter Brand: And Jeremy’s about to find out why.
[he pauses the tape again]
Peter Brand: Jeremy is about to realize that the ball went sixty feet over the fence. He hit a home run and didn’t even realize it.
[after Peter has showed him the tape of Jeremy Brown hitting a home run]
Billy Beane: How can you not be romantic about baseball?
Peter Brand: It’s a metaphor.
Billy Beane: I know it’s a metaphor.
[Billy gets up to leave]
Billy Beane: Okay. Pete, you’re a good egg. I’ll call you.
[last lines; Billy is driving his truck listening to a CD his daughter made for him]
Casey Beane: Uh…hey, dad. This is the song you asked me to record. Please don’t show it anyone else. Uh… let me know if you change your mind and stay in California. If not, you were really great dad.
[end title states Billy turned down the Red Sox’s offer of 12.5 million dollars and stayed as the GM of the Oakland A’s. Two years later, the Red Sox won the 2004 World Series, using the same model Billy pioneered and Billy is still trying to win the last game]
Total Quotes: 69
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