Climate craziness of the week – global warming blamed for increase In Major League home runs

“…thinner air” cited by sports broadcaster

Scene from live broadcast - click for video

From DeadSpin’s Timothy Burke:

Tim McCarver Blames Global Warming For The Increase In Major League Home Runs

We’d normally save this sort of thing for McCarve’d Up (which will be back next week after being pre-empted for NFL draft coverage) but Tim McCarver said one of the stupidest things ever spoken on a television broadcast today, blaming global warming for “making the air thin” and thus leading to a rise in home runs.

Climate change, or in McCarver’s words “climactic change,” is the culprit (and not, say, steroids, the age of which McCarver insists is over). Global warming is a real thing (climate change deniers are already giving McCarver a beatdown online) but the theory it’s led to increased major league offensive production is one of the most insane things ever asserted by a professional broadcaster. And this man is in the Hall of Fame! [Fox]

h/t to WUWT reader Eric Neilsen

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Former MLB player and broadcaster Tim McCarver…Image from Wikipedia

Former MLB player and broadcaster Tim McCarver...

Too many balls to the head?

UPDATE: It gets dumber. MLB has blocked the video on YouTube citing copyright violations…except that under fair use exceptions to the copyright law, criticism of boneheadedness is allowed, especially when using short snippets like this video clip.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GSRwnY3eHKU&feature=player_embedded

And these two incidents, combined with exorbitant prices to support exorbitant salaries, are why I don’t go to baseball games anymore. The great American pastime has lost its mojo.

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Timebandit

and there is me thinking it was the steroids!!! How wrong can I be… (sarc)

Richard A

Well it is funny how anti global warmists are called crackpots and alarmists, so it will be interesting to see what the scientific GW community have to say about this non peer reviewed published statement….

frozenohio

Seriously?
WoW.

Tim McCarver, High School Diploma (1959)

pat

I suppose that I need tell anyone with an education that a warm, moisture laden atmosphere would actually shorten the distance of a baseball given equal bat launching energy and trajectory as opposed to cold and dry .

Yes but lets not forget that baseball players also think a purely US based competition is somehow a World Series, so comments about ‘thin air from climate change’ shouldn’t come as too big a suprise. /sarc
(At least when we have a World Series Cricket competition we actually invite around 14 different countries to compete).

Reblogged this on TaJnB | TheAverageJoeNewsBlogg.

Hall of Lame is more appropriate.

Tim McCarver is one of those dumb, ex-jock sportscasters, that, when you hear them on the radio you tune to another station hoping to find a deodorant commercial.

Dave N

Support from James Cameron and Leo Dicaprio in 3.. 2…

John F. Hultquist

In the NFL passing us up nearly 60 yards per game since 2003:
“How the NFL Put a Fork in Defense” (WSJ, April 26th) by Kevin Clark
Two major sports – two data points. Statistics don’t lie, so it must be true. The air is more buoyant. Put Tim McCarver right up there with the other “climate scientists” who know of what they speak. Or maybe not so much.

Philip Bradley

It’s proof of falling sea levels.
Its well known in cricket that balls go farther at higher altitude where the air is thinner. Falling sea levels will increase the altitude and thin the air.

Using that logic, Denver’s quarterbacks should be able to throw touchdown passes from 5 yards inside their own endzone during home games…

Mike Busby says:
April 28, 2012 at 10:41 pm
Yes but lets not forget that baseball players also think a purely US based competition is somehow a World Series, so comments about ‘thin air from climate change’ shouldn’t come as too big a suprise. /sarc
(At least when we have a World Series Cricket competition we actually invite around 14 different countries to compete)

In hopes of fielding two complete teams?
Yeah, I know, I’m going to hell for that,,,

@John F. Hultquist. As the air is more buoyant, aircraft will be able to use less fuel in their flights., but precipitation will be inhibited. Overall, is buoyant air a positive or negative feedback?

TC

This explains a lot, especially the improvements in athletics. We now know that Usain Bolt’s 100m and 200m world records were climate assisted.
TC

Berényi Péter

Why, as time goes by it seems to be getting easier to pull theories out of thin air, which proves air is getting thinner indeed, does not it?

It is indeed rare that someone says something so stupid that mocking them just seems pointless.

JPeden

Maybe we should just consider ourselves lucky that the King of Baseball Trivia hasn’t yet charted out home runs per ppm CO2 or ACE, along with all he rest of his irrelevant correlations. Sad to say McCarver can really almost ruin a baseball game by insisting on revealing to us his endless nonsensical correlations, and I’m a loyal St.Louis Cardinal fan! [McCarver was a Catcher for St.L. back in the day, and the story the great Bob Gibson told on this same ‘climate change’ broadcast about the first time he met Willie Mays is still quite funny: until he met Gibson off the field at his home in San Franciso, Mays didn’t know that Gibson always wore glasses so that he could see well enough to function normally…except when Gibson was pitching! According to Gibson, Willie was pretty well shook!]

Adam Gallon

Yep, steroids are long gone, except for those who are poor & ignorant.
It’s HGH, Aranesp & other biosynthetics now.

Graphite

OK, deniers, but what else can explain Baltimore’s 13-8 record, Washington at 14-7 and Pujols’ .226 average? Something weird is in the air.

davidmhoffer says:
“It is indeed rare that someone says something so stupid that mocking them just seems pointless.”
Sounds just like a reference to Joe Biden.☺

DirkH

Graphite says:
April 29, 2012 at 12:14 am
“OK, deniers, but what else can explain Baltimore’s 13-8 record, Washington at 14-7 and Pujols’ .226 average? Something weird is in the air.”
The increased CO2 content clearly enables faster oxygen release in muscle tissue, as hemoglobin is sensitive to the higher acidity caused by the CO2. It has nothing to do with thinner air. 😉

manicbeancounter

Take it down to Tim McCarver’s level.
How can increasing the amount of gas in the atmosphere make the air “thinner”?

goldie

Can this guy chew and walk at the same time?

Jimbo

So far looks like no one has posted it so here is the list of things caused by global warming / co2.
http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/warmlist.htm
There is a correlation between global warming and the decreased use of steroids in baseball. Oh heck, how about all sports, that’s why the Olympic committee has done away with drugs testing. Silly me.

pat says:
“I suppose that I need tell anyone with an education that a warm, moisture laden atmosphere would actually shorten the distance of a baseball given equal bat launching energy and trajectory as opposed to cold and dry .”{
Sorry Pat — moist air is less dense than dry air at any temperature.

Me

It’s mo like mo sterrreeeooos dan it is tinner air.

Otter

Hey, don’t forget, the upper bleachers are known as ‘the nose bleed’ section…

Graphite

DirkH says:
April 29, 2012 at 1:24 am
It has nothing to do with thinner air. 😉
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++
Well, obviously not. It’s far greater than that. As anyone who’s followed the O’s since the mid ’90s will tell you, baseballing events of the past three weeks or so have been so astonishing that they may well presage the end of days.

FerdinandAkin

Does “climactic change” mean the end of the ‘No Hitter’? Times were different in the past when pitchers would achieve No Hitters.

old44

Perhaps the thinner air is affecting the writers brain cells.

Michael Jankowski

“…(At least when we have a World Series Cricket competition we actually invite around 14 different countries to compete)…”
Eh, I think a very large number of countries are represented by players in MLB…currently 17, I believe, from 5 continents.

Michael Jankowski

Has Tim done a study with leagues in Japan, Cuba, etc? How does he know this isn’t just regional? lol

EJ

He’s a catcher, the smartest man on the field, the dumbest off of it.

George E. Smith

Well that just proves that statistics is no more meaningful with respect to that children’s sand lot game, than it is to weather and climate; and surprisingly, in both fields, grown men actually watch and write down those numbers as if they actually relate to something meaningful.
Well they aren’t likely to change the name of the whirled series any time soon; but I understand there is a move in the NFL to change the name of that game to “Please don’t kick the ball !”
Aussie rules fans would all fall aslepp during an NFL spectacle.

Richard M

Warmer weather in the spring could lead to more home runs. For those of you who have tried to hit a baseball (or golf ball, or whatever) you know how much it can sting when it is cold out. In addition, players will tend to stiffen up more in cooler weather.
However, warmer weather in mid summer could lead to more exhaustion and lessen the ability to focus. This would likely lead to fewer home runs.
I don’t think it’s crazy to say that weather extremes could lead to changes in player performance.

Steve from Rockwood

He even looks stupid.

3x2

Is there a bottom to this pit?

Usually (I said “usually”) when Timmy talks baseball he’s fairly knowledgeable. On any other topic he’s a real dunce.
Perhaps he should listen more to Gibson, who regularly told him when he would come out to the mound, to get the hell behind the plate and shut up.

biff33

It is possible — is it not? — that McCarver was joking.

guidoLaMoto

While the concept of “GW” may be dubious, we were certainly in the warming portion of the 60 yr weather cycle from ~’75-’05 when HR production was up. Many factors contributed to that: new, smaller parks, lighter bats in use, bigger players, etc. But both theoretical considerations & empirical evidence show that a baseball can be hit significantly farther in warmer, drier, thinner air than in cooler, more humid, thicker air. (Pitched balls don’t break nearly as much either.) Cf: “The Physics of Baseball,” RK Adair,PhD. Pitchers hate playing in Denver. Hitters love it.
Another good McCarver story: in a tight spot in a WS game, McCarver called time to go out to give advice to Gibson. Gibson came toward him scowling and yelled at McCarver, “Get back behind the plate. The only thing you know about pitching is that you can’t hit it!”

Way too simple to blame WEAK PITCHING in the MLB.

EternalOptimist

Paradoxically, there may be some truth in what he says. Consider the tortoise, it has one of the most efficient wind resistance coefficients in the animal kingdom, it is just built for speed. And yet it is known for its slowness.
Surely an animal that evolved for speed in a thick soupy atmosphere tells us that something has changed, the air has gotten thinner.
And a quick check of the historical records tells us that at one point , in the late aesopolithic, the tortoise was often recorded as being faster than a hare

beesaman

Better storage, hence dry baseballs being the reason? Stop smirking on the back row!
http://mythbustersresults.com/episode83

Bruce Cobb

He’s obviously very confused. The only place the air is thinner is at higher altitudes, due to the lower air pressure. I guess he thinks that the some 75 ppm that C02 has risen the past 50 years has made the air “thinner”, by displacing oxygen. Come to think of it, as I’ve gotten older, I have noticed that with physical exertion I become out of breath more easily. Perhaps he’s onto something.

Tom in Florida

Increased home runs probably have nothing to do with building new ballparks with shorter distances to fences. What is known is that when Fenway Park built the sky boxes on top of the stadium behind home plate it changed the wind patterns and home runs at that park decreased.

PaulH

Someone should tell Albert Pujols. ;->
(A home run hitter with zero home runs, earning $12,000,000/season.)

MattC

I would have thought, with global warming’s widely known profound effect on trees, that it would be the wooden bats that have changed to allow more home runs. Seems to me that the thinner air would also mean faster fast balls thus cancelling out the effect on hit balls. Has there been a corresponding increase in pitch speed and strike-outs as well?
Also, we know that the air in a baseball park would obviously have a higher concentration of CO2 because of all the beer. That should mean that the temperature at ball parks would be elevated relative to the surrounding area – I’m going to call this the Beer Heat Island Effect. By closely monitoring BHIE at baseball parks, we’ll be able to see the immediate future effects of higher concentrations f CO2. I’m going to need a grant that includes budgeting for tickets (I’ll need to set up my temperature station somewhere along the 1st baseline), two kosher hotdogs with kraut, a bag of peanuts and, of course, a large test sample of the local beer (unless it’s Busch, this World and everybody in it will burn to a crisp before I drin…. um, test Busch)

ferdberple

Tim McCarver apparently doesn’t know baseball.
It was noted some years ago at Coors field that balls kept in a humidor did not fly as far. Dry balls fly farther. Over time other clubs learned this and now use this as a means of increasing excitement at games.
http://www.baseballprospectus.com/article.php?articleid=13057
For the first seven seasons at Coors, there were 3.20 home runs hit per gamecompared to 1.93 per Rockies away game. However, beginning in 2002 the Colorado Rockies began to store their baseballs in a humidor at a constant 50 percent relative humidity and 700F, as opposed to the more typical 30 percent humidity in Denver. During the period from 2002-2010 the Coors ratio decreased to 2.39, a reduction of 25 percent, while the away game ratio stayed constant at 1.86. Is it plausible that the reduction in home runs can be attributed to the humidor? The primary goal of this article is to answer that question.