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Juiced baseballs even more likely to be responsible for all these homers

Friday’s Say Hey, Baseball looks at another study on changes to the baseball, Bartolo Colon’s career, and a pair of unfortunate injuries.

New York Yankees v Chicago White Sox Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

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In the middle of June, Ben Lindbergh and The Ringer released a study showing that maybe, just maybe, a change in the baseballs was responsible for all these homers that we're seeing in 2017. We went over the study in this space and cautioned that even Lindbergh himself said it wasn't definite, even if it was likely. More evidence was needed, as is always the case with something like this.

However, now we have an additional study from another angle to look at, which makes the chances of lower seams on the baseballs (and therefore more homers) that much more likely. Rob Arthur studied air resistance at 538, using MLB's own technology, and that led him to the conclusion that the baseballs are likely different and in a way that is changing how they are coming off the bat.

As Arthur (and Lindbergh previously) mentioned, this doesn't mean the rise in homers and a change to the baseball was some nefarious scheme by Major League Baseball. However, given Rob Manfred's statements on fans loving run scoring and the need to keep fans engaged, and MLB's own role in turning a blind eye to the steroid era of the ‘90s, well, it's also hard not to see this as some intentional change by baseball rather than an honest mistake born from a change in design.

It might not matter much either way, of course. The balls have changed before many times and home runs spiked, or the mound was raised and offense dropped, and so on — it's all part of the cyclical nature of the game. For now, we're living in a home run era: one that might see one-third of the league smash franchise records for dingers in a season. Is that a bad thing?

Or, to put it another way: Do you want to know the terrifying truth? Or do you want to see your favs sock a few dingers?