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After 84 years without a Series win, the Sox were salvaged in '02 by John Henry, an owner whose fortune grew from data-driven investments.Henry whiffed on hiring Billy Beane but landed like-minded sabermetricians Bill James and Tom Tippett and made wunderkind Theo Epstein GM.1 in defensive efficiency and has produced six winning seasons.And it's all thanks to a staff of eight R&D specialists who find numerical advantages not only in every defensive shift but in every roster move -- just four Rays have made million or more in a single season since 2008.
Moneyball is alive and well in Oakland, but since that seminal book was published in '03, the league has upped its investment in sabermetrics, closing the gap on Billy Beane. In 2009, GM Stan Bowman became one of the first NHL execs to hire an outside analytics firm -- half a decade before 2014's "Summer of Analytics" hit the ice.
Don't get your hopes up for a change with Ryan gone.
New GM Mike Maccagnan and new coach Todd Bowles likewise sport old-school credentials and were not hired to spearhead a stats awakening for Gang Green -- Maccagnan brings a scouting background (read: the good ol' eye test) from Houston and Bowles comes from Arizona, two franchises that remain skeptical of analytics.
Beane, the Rays were the first MLB team to go all-in on analytics and reach the promised land.
Since 2008, when it appeared in the World Series, Tampa Bay has been No.