Episode Information

Foul Play: Episode 3
Foul Play
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In this episode:

The argument for metal bats



Foul Play: Episode 3

Producer Jeffrey Marlowe

Wally Stampfel, chairman of the Catholic High School Athletic Association, and other metal bat supporters defend the use of non-wood bats in amateur baseball and reject the idea of a metal bat ban.

Coming up next time: Robert Adair, Sterling Professor Emeritus of physics at Yale University, delves into the physics of what separates wood and metal bats. The trampoline effect, moment of inertia, and Ball Exit Speed Ratio are all discussed as we try to answer if metal bats outperform wooden bats

Coach Stampel stated in The New York Times, "I mean, if you want to say more balls get hit harder with an aluminum bat than a wood bat, obviously I can't deny that. But that doesn't make aluminum bats more dangerous. read the entire story

In March of 2007, the New York City Council passed a law that banned metal bat usage in high school baseball within the city of New York. The bill, brainchild of councilman James Oddo, was vetoed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg. However, his veto was overridden 41-4 and the law went into effect September 1, 2007. Read more on the story here.

Q: Are there other rules/laws like the New York City non-wood bat ban?

A: Yes, other such laws do exist. As well as New York City, North Dakota high schools and the Northeast 10 college league are also now wood-only leagues. Other states such as Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Virginia are or have talked about passing similar legislation.

Links: http://skallas.wordpress.com/2007/08/30/little-league-–-is-winning-more-important-than-safety-by-steve-kallas-and-rick-wolff/

Q: What studies and surveys have been done that support the claims that wood and non-wood bats are just as safe?

A: Organizations like the DTMBA and Little League are quick to throw out statistics and surveys that support their claim that wood and non-wood bats are equally safe. However, a close looks at their information shows that many of the tests and studies that conducted only superficially look over the issue without testing it in real world setting. Also, many of the conclusions from these studies are only excerpts, like the Mueller study. The study is used by metal bat supporters to show how baseball is a relatively safe sport. However, what they do not report is that the rate of injury to pitchers in leagues using metal bats was three times higher than those using wood bats.

Links: http://www.dtmba.com/news.html

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