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Wendy Thurm

Writer

San Francisco

Wendy Thurm

Writer with a focus on sports. Particular expertise in baseball advanced statistics, sports business and sports law. Work has been published by The New Yorker, Deadspin, Vice Sports, ESPN, Men's Journal, Sports on Earth, SBNation, The Wall Street Journal, San Francisco Magazine, FanGraphs, Baseball Prospectus and The Score. Active on Twitter, with more than 11,000 followers (@hangingsliders). Recovering lawyer.

An Unchanging Truth: Positional Offense Through History

Baseball has seen many changes in the past 100 years. Some changes are significant enough, retrospectively, to define an era. There was the Deadball Era from roughly 1901 to 1919, characterized by an emphasis on pitching, defense, and a low run-scoring environment. The Liveball Era began in 1920, ushered in by Babe Ruth, cleaner baseballs that were easier for batters to see, and rule changes like banning the spitball.
Fangraphs Link to Story

The Warriors Are At Home In Oakland—But for How Long?

The streets of Oakland were quiet just a few hours before Game 1 of the NBA Finals. In the Fruitvale District, less than a mile from the Warriors' home court at Oracle Arena, mothers pushed strollers, kids walked home from school, and a few shoppers browsed the pop-up stands near the public market.
Vice Sports Link to Story

Major League Baseball Reaches for Its Stars

While there is a new crop of young players who combine spectacular on-field performances with appealing personalities, none has reached quite the same level of star power—something M.L.B. is hoping to change. At the height of his popularity, Jeter earned nine million dollars a year in endorsements from the likes of Nike, Gatorade, Ford, and Movado; he regularly topped lists of the most powerful, the most marketable, and the most recognizable professional athletes in the world.
The New Yorker Link to Story

How To Talk To Your Kids About Sexual Assault And Sports

When I thought my son was old enough to understand the concept of "no means no," I said those exact words to him when he appeared unwilling to back away from a confrontation-in-the-making. This kind of situation arose frequently—the playground, a playdate, just being around his younger sister. "Jonny said he doesn't want to play that game anymore," I'd say.
Deadspin Link to Story

Female Sportswriter Asks: ‘Why Are All My Twitter Followers Men?’

by Wendy Thurm - Guest Contributor Posted on November 20, 2014 at 10:09 am Updated: November 20, 2014 at 12:40 pm. "Female Sportswriter Asks: ‘Why Are All My Twitter Followers Men?’" I am a sportswriter with more than 9,500 followers on Twitter. Remarkably, just 11 percent of them are women. I learned this recently when Twitter released Twitter Analytics, which allows any user to see detailed information on her account.
Think Progress Link to Story

The "Gamer Babe" Problem

The San Francisco Giants have a very particular problem with their broadcast team and their female fans. But it's bigger than the Giants, and bigger than it seems. Language matters. Words have meaning, often more than one. Sometimes the speaker means one thing but the listener hears another because words have histories and people have histories and those histories aren’t always the same.
The Classical Link to Story

Giants vs. Red Sox in World Series? Idea is not that far-fetched

Sporting News Link to Story

After miserable start, Astros showing signs of being a playoff contender

Heading into their Thursday afternoon game against the Diamondbacks, the Astros are riding a five-game winning streak, their longest of the season. That followed a three-game sweep of the Orioles, with only a loss to the Angels sandwiched in between. The Orioles series was notable not just for the sweep but for the way the Astros won: by limiting Baltimore’s high-powered offense to a total of seven runs.
Sporting News Link to Story

Not every great player wins a title, but Mike Trout still has time

After a slow start, Mike Trout is atop of the MLB leaderboards. On Fangraphs, Trout leads all major leaguers with 3.1 Wins Above Replacement, thanks to high marks for his defense and baserunning, in addition to his prodigious offense. On Baseball-Reference, Trout sits a shade behind Jose Altuve and Adam Eaton.
Sporting News Link to Story

Trying to make sense of why the NL West race is a muddle

Preseason predictions for the National League West envisioned a three-team race. That’s what we’ve seen so far, although the teams in the mix aren’t exactly what pundits expected. The Rockies have been the big surprise, particularly on the road. The Diamondbacks have been the biggest disappointment, particularly at home.
Sporting News Link to Story

MLB good to highlight breast cancer, but Mother's Day is so much more

Pink was the color of the day in Major League Baseball on Sunday. Players wore pink cleats and pink wrist bands. Traditional jersey colors were replaced with pink letters and numbers. Many players used pink bats. The pink-a-palooza was part of MLB’s efforts to raise awareness of and money for breast cancer research.
Sporting News Link to Story

Nomar Mazara, Aledmys Diaz among rookies taking advantage of golden opportunity

We’re in a golden era for young baseball talent. Bryce Harper and Mike Trout are the best players in the game. Manny Machado is making a play to add his name to that list. Same for Carlos Correa. Gregory Polanco and Michael Conforto are knocking the stitches off the ball. Kris Bryant and Francisco Lindor are flashing incredible glove work.
Sporting News Link to Story

About

Wendy Thurm

I like to tell stories.

For twenty years, I told stories to judges, juries and clients. I practiced law in San Francisco, mostly high stakes civil and white collar criminal cases.

Before that, I told stories to voters while working on political campaigns and in government offices.

Now I tell stories about sports. Baseball mostly. Sometimes I tell stories with numbers. Sometimes I use just words. Always I try to give the reader a deeper, fuller understanding of a game, team and player.

It's a journey. Come along on the ride.