Murray Chass (born October 12, 1938, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) is an American blogger who covers baseball. He previously wrote for The New York Times and before that the Associated Press on baseball and sports legal and labor relations. In 2003 the Baseball Writers Association of America honored him with the J. G. Taylor Spink Award. He was effectively ousted from the Times in April 2008.
Chass graduated from the University of Pittsburgh in 1960 with a bachelor's degree in political science where he was a writer and editor for the Pitt News. In 1956 he "audaciously" made an appointment with the editor of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette to pursue his "future of a newspaperman". He joined the Baseball Writers Association of America in 1962, when he worked for the Associated Press in Pittsburgh. He joined the New York Times in 1969, and started covering the New York Yankees the following year. In 1986, he was made the paper's national baseball writer.
From 1979–1980 he served as chairman of the New York chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America. Chass has authored numerous books on the business, labor and legal relations of sports, baseball in particular, among his works: The Yankees: The Four Fabulous Eras of Baseball's Most Famous Team, which was published by Random House in 1979; Power Football, published by Dutton in 1973, and Pittsburgh Steelers: The Long Climb, published by Prentice Hall in 1973. He has contributed to Great Pro Football Games and Greatest Basketball Games. He also authored several articles in Dutton's Best Sports Stories series.
Chass is a noted baseball traditionalist who laments the shift in baseball news coverage from daily beat-report biographies to more statistics-driven analysis like sabermetrics. In 2007, Chass asserted that, among "certain topics that should be off-limits," are "statistics mongers promoting VORP and other new-age baseball statistics." Chass particularly believes that in "their attempt to introduce these new-age statistics into the game," these "statistics mongers" threaten "to undermine most fans' enjoyment of baseball and the human factor therein." Baseball Prospectus editor Nate Silver published an open letter responding to Chass' comments.
In 2008, Chass started an online blog, "Murray Chass on Baseball". In 2011, Chass published a controversial blog accusing St. Louis Cardinals great Stan Musial of racism. The claim was based on a second-hand story allegedly relayed to Chass by former players' union head Marvin Miller in which a maitre d' at a restaurant of which Musial was a co-owner purportedly refused to seat Curt Flood and several of Musial's African-American ex-teammates on the owner's "instructions." Chass' blog was roundly criticized for its sole reliance on hearsay, and Flood's son later specifically refuted the accusation against Musial.
- Interview at nytimes.com
- Interview at fangraphs.com
- "BASEBALL; Chass to Enter Hall of Fame". New York Times. December 15, 2003.
- Murray Chass (February 27, 2007). "As Season Approaches, Some Topics Should Be Off Limits". The New York Times.
- Nate Silver, ""UNFILTERED; An Open Letter to Murray Chass"". Archived from the original on March 4, 2007. Retrieved 2008-02-26., Baseball Prospectus (February 27, 2007)
- "Men of Honor," Joe Blogs (March 26, 2011)
- "Murray Chass Slams Stan Musial. Really." Hardball Talk (March 24, 2011)
- "Murray Chass, Stan Musial, and Blogging," Viva El Birdos (March 25, 2011)
- "Comment of the Day: Curt Flood Jr. talks about the Stan Musial restaurant story," Hardball Talk (March 25, 2011)
Ruttman, Larry (2013). "Murray Chass: Hall of Fame New York Times Scribe". American Jews and America's Game: Voices of a Growing Legacy in Baseball. Lincoln, Nebraska and London, England: University of Nebraska Press. pp. 137–145. ISBN 978-0-8032-6475-5. This chapter in Ruttman's history, based on a November 17, 2009 interview with Chass conducted for the book, discusses Chass's American, Jewish, baseball, and life experiences from youth to the present.