The inside story of how the Dodgers won their first championship in more than 30 years–but helped cripple the sport of baseball in the process.

For most baseball teams, the 2020 season was a strange, short, fanless diversion–but not in Los Angeles. After years of frustrating playoff runs, they finally reclaimed the World Series trophy after more than 30 years, led by their star pitcher, Clayton Kershaw, their electric new outfielder, Mookie Betts, and a bevy of impressive young players assembled by their hard-charging, ingenious team President, Andrew Friedman. The collection of talent that took the field in 2020, and again in 2021, was nothing short of a superteam, on a par with the dynastic Yankees of the 1990s.

Yet winning at modern baseball is nothing like it was even 20 years ago. In the years since Billy Beane's famous Moneyball teams, baseball has grown to look less like a sport and more like a Wall Street firm that traded its boiler room for a field. Teams relentlessly exploit inefficiencies, new innovations, and tiny advantages–sometimes without regard for the rules of the game. The result is a sport that has never been played at a higher level, yet has seen its TV ratings and attendance numbers in long, slow decline. And with the league's collective bargaining agreement set to expire at the end of 2021, a labor crisis looms.

This fascinating book not only examines the remarkable Dodgers team that won it all, but offers a unique view inside a sport that can't seem to break its addiction to winning at all costs–even when those costs might be the future of the game. From Kershaw's late-career breakthrough to Friedman's machinations, it shows what it takes to win, and what it will take to save the sport.

What's Inside

Read More Read Less

Praise

“Today, baseball is deciding who it will serve in—and for—the coming generations. Soaked in greed and in the hands of Ivy League numbers crunchers, the game teeters between sport and thesis paper. Better it is in the hands of Pedro Moura, who, in How to Beat a Broken Game, has captured the science, the economics, and the soul of a pastime laboring to rediscover its most authentic self. It’s a brilliant book about the championship Dodgers. It’s a book about so much more.”—Tim Brown, bestselling coauthor of The Phenomenon and Imperfect
“Pedro Moura has written a clear-eyed, absorbing account of the Dodgers’ rise—and baseball’s decline. It lays out everything broken about Major League Baseball while simultaneously reminding us exactly why we love the sport so much. How to Beat a Broken Game is a book with heart to match its brains. If only the league itself could say the same thing.”—Eric Nusbaum, author of Stealing Home
“The scope of this book is just extraordinary. It’s supposedly about a single championship team, but it’s really about everything: technology and culture, insiders and outsiders, the young and the old, and all that’s right and wrong and now and next in the sport today. Moura is such a great reporter that he does what every writer wishes they could do: He comes to know even more about his subject than his sources do. I loved this book, even if it did make me feel old.”—Sam Miller, bestselling coauthor of The Only Rule is It Has to Work
Read More Read Less