N.Y. Times sports writer Jonathan Mahler has hit on something in a 10.14 piece called “It’s All Moneyball Now.” The piece isn’t entirely about the political echoes in the film, but it nails something I’ve been kicking around for about a month now.
“Thanks partly to the cultural phenomenon of Moneyball, which demonstrated that teams didn’t need a big payroll to win, we’re all small-market fans now, no longer rooting for the hapless underdog — sorry, Mets and Cubs — but for the team that is doing more with less.
“It’s a subtle but significant distinction and it has unmistakable political overtones, especially during this time of rising class resentment. You didn’t have to spend the day dancing around the drum circle in Zuccotti Park to see Game 5 of the Yankees-Tigers division series in New York — with its constant cutaways to those slick-suited men hunched over their BlackBerrys in the Legends Suites — as more than just a baseball game.
“It may be time to update the old cliche that rooting for the Yankees is like rooting for U.S. Steel. Today, it’s more like rooting for Goldman Sachs.”