MLB officially released a statement about the baseballs in the 2019 playoffs amidst a lot of speculation and rumor. This, after a summer of controversies over the changes in the balls used in MLB.
BREAKING: MLB issues statement on baseballs used in postseason. “Balls that are used in the Postseason are pulled from the same batches as balls used in the regular season…. only difference is the stamp placed on the ball.” Additional comments: pic.twitter.com/SX9NqfykiY
— Maury Brown (@BizballMaury) October 10, 2019
The Balls Were In MLB’s Court
If one reads this carefully, it is designed to be a little misleading. “Are pulled from the same batches” gives a vibe like they’re just pulling balls out of a bucket, but I digress. Studies over the past few seasons have concluded that the difference in the baseballs in MLB are largely attributed to the drag on the baseball. This means the seams are lower, the tactile feel of the outside of the balls may be glossed or attributed to a different material, etc. However, the added logo on the ball could definitely change the trajectory of the ball. The question over how much a ball’s drag can change based on an added logo is a mystery.
Did This Effect The Dodgers Fate?
Many Dodger fans have wondered whether Will Smith’s fly out in game 5 should have left. In reality, this doesn’t matter. In that same game, a Howie Kendrick fly ball probably should have left, as well. Both the Nationals and Dodgers competed with the same baseballs. The Dodgers lost because of bullpen mismanagement and lack of hitting. According to MLB’s statement, should it be true, the balls aren’t much different. This will most likely not change the opinion of many fans, as the conspiracies are vast. In short though, the Dodgers however, lost fair and square.