The book with his hands to the side.

Ben Reiter: My Kind of Guy

By Alex Gibbs
Assistant Sports Director

Ben Reiter remembers his college days like they were yesterday. “I wrote for the Yale Herald which is the weekly newspaper there. I was drawn to more kind of, magazine [and] long form and lead type pieces; and I was a history major!”

Reiter, who graduated from Yale University in 2002 and has been a senior writer for Sports Illustrated since 2004, gave his thoughts on his career while visiting a sports media class at Texas State University on Tuesday.

The book with his hands to the side.
“Astroball” is Reiter’s full account of the Astros front office and their rebuild using analytics and home-grown talent. Photo by Reily Chestnut.

Reiter famously predicted the Houston Astros winning the 2017 world series three years prior in 2014 with an SI cover. This would later evolve into the book, “Astroball: The New Way to Win it All.” Reiter has written 25 cover stories for SI, but this one obviously took a life of its own. One of the things he noted about the prediction was that it wasn’t random by any means. “There are reasons why you make these predictions,” he said. “The underlying prediction was that we felt as if they were onto something new that had a great chance of working much faster than anyone could have imagined.”

Reiter also said that luck had a lot to do with it. “I think the basis of making good predictions is obviously needing a ton of luck and a grounding of really open-mindedness combined with hard work. I think you’re much more likely to successfully be able to have a better idea of what’s happening in the future.”

Predictions and baseball aside, Reiter gave a lot of advice to students on why they should be passionate about what they do and how their work should be viewed. “I just love to write,” he said. “I don’t think you should view sports journalism any different from any other form of journalism. I often think that sports is just an excuse to write great stories about almost anything.”

Great stories about almost anything…. now that’s a real journalist.

Featured photo by Reily Chestnut.

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