A professor at Case Western Reserve University showed us how the cold, damp, lake-effect air can affect the post season baseball games.
Blustery, fall weather moved in just in time for the start of the playoffs, so we knew where to go to find out how that will impact the Guardians.
We went CWRU physics professor Bob Brown, an old friend who’s done research before on how the cold affects baseball.
First, he says you might not see as many home runs.
Brown said, “First of all, the air is gonna get heavier. The molecules are not pushing out. They’re going slower.”
He added, “So, we end up having heavier air. What happens is, if we have a 330 foot home run, it may only be a 300 foot (fly ball), or long out.”
Cold air hurts the hitters. And, listen to how it also helps pitchers trying to make batters miss.
Brown also said, “First of all, when you’ve got the heavier air, the ball, the spin on the curve balls and breaking balls, are gonna break more.”
We also wondered about any impact on the fielders, maybe, trying to throw out a runner. The professor tells us colder weather should not make much difference on those kinds of plays. They involve throws in a straight line. And, often in short distances.
Of course, no matter what the weather, the players have told us they are simply anxious to get on the field for the playoffs.
Bob Brown has taught at Case Western Reserve University for decades. He knows physics. And, he knows baseball.
He points out, the Guardians don’t normally hit as many home runs as other teams. Plus, Cleveland has some good pitching. So, he believes the chilly weather just might help the Guardians in the playoffs.
Brown added, “Well, I love this. I want this to be cold.”