Everyone knows by now that Aaron Judge is a complete beast when he steps to the plate. Whether he is about to become the new face of baseball — which he almost certainly will be if he keeps this up because he plays for the Yankees and can hit the ball so very, very far — Judge is fun to watch right now.
He was especially fun to watch during this week’s Home Run Derby, which he won with ease and style, hitting small balls with a stick until they traveled more than 500 feet to the furthest reaches of the ballpark as the crowd went nuts for his impressive performance. One of them (two if you count his show of force in batting practice before the event) even managed to ping off the roof as if he were hitting balls at his local indoor batting cage.
That’s impressive no matter what the details, but it’s now come to light that the Marlins consulted NASA about how to build their park so that this exact thing would not happen during a game. Yes, that NASA. With all the geniuses and scientific accuracy and stuff.
In an anecdote from a recent Sports Illustrated article, SI’s Tom Verducci revealed that while the park was being built the organization “studied the air density and temperatures of Miami and plugged those variables into equations from NASA” before then writing an algorithm “to generate a volumetric approximation of all the possible batted ball flight paths” to make sure that nothing white and spherical would even come close to touching that retractable roof of theirs.
Aaron Judge just blew all that math and science to smithereens.
Now, granted, Judge hit the roof during an event that is specifically manufactured so that people can hit baseballs long distances over and over again, not in an actual game. But still. No one else hit the roof, and he did it twice, against all odds and NASA’s best calculations. They put people on the moon successfully, and Judge unraveled one of their algorithms with a good old fashioned moon shot. He’s unreal.