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Re: Re: Science Mistakes

Posted by: Joe A. () on Fri Aug 5 12:16:05 2005

> > I googled the term "Science of Hitting, baseball."
> >
> > One of the sites that popped up talked about reaction time of a 90 mph pitch over 60 feet 6 inches. There were a lot of calculations based on these basic facts and a lot of conclusions based on these calculations.
> >
> > Lets look at this ‘science.' The distance of 60 ft 6 inches is measured from the rubber to the point of the plate. The point of the plate points toward the catcher. Major league pitchers will release the ball from 4 to 6 ft in front of the rubber.
> >
> > No batters tries to make contact over the point of the plate. Most batters stand with their front foot in front of the plate and try to hit the ball at or just before the front hip. The plate is 1 ½ feet from front to point. Batter will hit the ball at least a foot in front of the front edge of the plate.
> >
> > So, say 5 feet in front of the rubber and 2 ½ feet in front of the point of the plate totals 7 ½ feet from the 60 ½ feet or 53 feet of actual travel time. This is at least 10% less then the distance used to calculate travel time.
> >
> > This is what passes for science in sports today. This is an error so fundamental that the word science does not really apply. And I can give you many more examples of similar or worse uses of the term ‘science.' I snuggest that you don't believe anything called ‘science' unless you know the facts behind the conclusions and even facts can be misleading.
> >
> > Joe A.
> joe a, welcome back...i agree with your math on calcs for travel time....i also agree that the term "science" has been used much too loosly...
> what's interesting is that when someone really wants to discuss SCIENCE, everyone runs away, probably because they are not noy qualified to discuss REAL SCIENCE...an example is the book bahill & watts wrote...full of scientific & mathematical models demonstrating that a ball hit 1/2 inch below center will travel x amount farther than a ball hit mid-center...everyone is afraid to discuss it (they dismiss it but don't discuss it!)...
> another example is the interactive demonstrations at the explotitorium site...the site is science-oriented and they have a good demo showing the relationship between the trajactory of the batted ball, distance of the batted ball and the launch angle...again, no one wants to discuss it....
> let's face it: REAL SCIENCE is over the heads of many people..people want to discuss only what they think they understand, and if it's not science they will call it science anyway....


Here is another example of ‘science' that people read about and try to use. Its interesting that even scientist are not good at doing science.

I read an abstract of a study done to determine how a ball must be struck to hit it the maximum distance. The conclusion was that if the ball was struck with the bat on an upward path about 1/4 of an inch below the center it would travel further then any other way.

I got the name, school, and eventually the email address of the scientist who did the study and asked this question: Since most batters stand with their hands ‘above' the level of the highest strike, to hit the ball they way you describe requires the batter to swoop the bat below the level of the ball then upward through the ball. Is this what you are recommending?

He answered that they did not use a ball and bat in their study. They did it all with mathematics. But, he did say that in their next study, if they did one, they are considering using a bat and ball.

Joe A.


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