Apr 27, 2023 - Climate

Global warming is "juicing" home runs at ballparks

Colorado Rockies player Kris Bryant prepares to bat during a game against the Washington Nationals at Coors Field on April 8. Photo: Dustin Bradford/Getty Images

Coors Field's reputation as a home-run mecca could get a boost from an unlikely β€” and unwanted β€” element: global warming.

Driving the news: Global warming is now leading to more home runs in the MLB, according to an analysis by Dartmouth College scientists published earlier this month in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society.

  • The analysis says "several hundred additional home runs" are projected every season due to global warming.

By the numbers: The study looked at 100,000 MLB games and more than 200,000 individual batted balls to get their results.

  • It found more than 500 home runs since 2010 are attributable to historical warming, since hotter, thinner air means balls travel farther distances.

What they're saying: "Global warming is juicing home runs in Major League Baseball," study co-author Justin Mankin told The Associated Press.

Yes, but: The study doesn't mention Denver's Coors Field, which has a reputation for being a hitter's ballpark in the majors, since players are more likely to see their balls go farther than inside other stadiums.

  • That's due to our high altitude, which means thinner air β€” making it easier for a baseball to fly through it.
  • Rockies reliever Brent Suter told the AP he isn't a fan of the added home runs but believes the study's conclusion.

The bottom line: Climate change is real, and its impacts continue creeping into our lives in several ways, including our food, our wildlife, and our air.


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