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I love the Mythbusters!

Posted by gnn1 on Saturday, 11 August 2007

I finally got around to watching the baseball episode of Mythbusters tonight.  They totally shattered the corked bat theory!

In theory, players (including Sammy Sosa) have thought that a corked bat, because it weighs less, will allow them to swing faster and hit the ball further (a sorta, kinda totally illegal manoeuvre).

Well, in practice a corked bat only hits the ball about HALF as far.  In their (controlled) tests, the ball, pitched (by machine) at 80 miles per hour left the uncorked bat (swung by machine at 62 mph) at 80mph (speed determined by viewing high speed cameras).   The corked bat was then substituted, and the ball left the bat at only about 40 mph!

Two reasons were given for this:

1) Since the bat weighed less, there was less energy to be transferred to the ball

2) the cork absorbed some of the ball’s energy, slowing it down.

I was totally shocked… I was one of the ones that thought the ball would go further with the corked bat.


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