Mon. Jul 22nd, 2019

Are The Balls Juiced?

I like a classic pitchers’ duel.

Just kidding, I’d prefer a lot of runs to be scored. It’s more exciting and adds the element to the game that everybody wants to see.

Longtime star pitcher Justin Verlander had a lot to say about the idea that the balls are juiced and it has gained traction across the league.

On a day he was named the American League’s starting pitcher for the 2019 All-Star Game, Verlander issued his strongest condemnation yet of the official major league baseballs, calling them “a f—ing joke,” and suggesting MLB is manipulating the balls to increase offense.
“Yes. 100 percent,” he told ESPN on Monday. “They’ve been using juiced balls in the Home Run Derby forever. They know how to do it.”

USA TODAY

Remember the steroid era?

I don’t mean to be that guy, but those games with the players that eventually got caught taking PED’s were some of the most exciting to watch. Barry Bonds, Mark McGwire & Jason Giambi to name a few of many. The idea that any pitch could be launched out of the park was enthralling to every fan.

Now that the steroid era has dwindled down, it is the accusation that the balls are being changed or doctored that has some fans and players upset.

Recently, the New York Yankees faced the Boston Red Sox in the “London Series” for this year. London Stadium across the pond was filled with nearly 60,000 people that are potential fans needing to see something worth the time.

They wanted to see offense and got it in both games. 17-13 & 12-8 with the Yanks winning both. That first game is a reasonable score for a NFL game!

At the All-Star break, MLB teams hit an average of 1.37 homers a game, which would break the 2017 record of 1.26. It may seem close, but over the course of a 162-game season, that is a huge difference.

Here are a couple other theories some of my friends proposed:

First, the pitchers throw harder, thus the ball gets hit harder. Next, the analytics that teams provide their hitters are so much better than back in the day, thus it leads to better offense. Additionally, the players could just be better…

Frankly, I’d rather see high scores – to an extent. For example, that 17-13 London Game is ridiculous and takes away from the authenticity of the game our grandparents grew up with last century.

I definitely think this is going to be a big topic of discussion for the rest of the season because such a big name in Justin Verlander brought it up. I wonder who else will agree with him in the coming days?

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