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Sanspo: how the new baseball could affect the NPB in 2011

by on Jan.02, 2011 @ 11:35 pm, under NPB

Sanspo has posted a report that discusses how things might change (specifically with regards to the very real possibility that OF's will have to make more plays) this year with the addition of the new Mizuno baseball.

The report also notes that this isn't the first time Mizuno manufactured a baseball with less carry: in 2005, 10 clubs were under contract with Mizuno when they came out with a baseball with less bounce.  The 12 teams of the NPB produced 1,747 that year.  That's a drop of 247 home runs from the previous season (1,994).

The report continues by taking the Yomiuri Giants as an example:

The new regulation baseball travels a distance of 109.4m (a drop from 110.4m) under the following conditions: fastball velocity of 144km/h; bat speed velocity of 126km/h; and swing angle of 27 degrees.  The distance to left-center and right-center at Tokyo Dome are listed as 110m.

In 2005, the Giants hit a total 186 home runs.  The year before that, they banged out 255.

One comment on “Sanspo: how the new baseball could affect the NPB in 2011

  1. Crovie

    It’s frightening to think that there could be even fewer HRs in NPB. I think it’s fine as it is now, that homeruns are rare enough to celebrate when they do happen, but common enough to hold interest in a game. I can understand being afraid of too many HRs, such as during the recent steroid age in MLB when the star hitter would almost always be intentionally walked, but NPB doesn’t have that problem.

    One thing that worries me even more though, as a relatively new NPB fan, is that players appear to often have trouble hitting a good sacrifice fly. Not only are players not hitting home runs, they usually aren’t even getting the ball within 30 feet of the wall. I understand japanese baseball is all about “small ball” but hopefully this doesn’t affect strategy too much. It will be hard to watch if every single play is a bunt or attempt at a line drive.

    It is a small difference, but who knows what effect it will have.

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