The Hardest Thing to Do in Sports

There are several difficult things to do in sports, like score a goal in soccer, hit a puck on a hockey rink, and hit a hole-in-one on the golf course. But, according to experts in physics, hitting a baseball is the most difficult thing to do in all of sports.


One of the best hitters in the game, Ted Williams, once said, "Baseball is the only field of endeavor where a man can succeed three times out of ten and be considered a good performer.” He understood the difficulty of using a great wooden bat and hitting a fastball approaching with speeds in excess of 90 miles per hour.


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When it comes to hitting a fastball with a wooden bat, like our M^Powered Pro Wood bats, hitters have to understand timing. Pitchers are on the mound working hard to upset the timing and if a batter swings just a tenth of a second off, he will miss the ball and earn a strike. Batters need to understand where the pitch is coming in horizontally and vertically. They also need to grasp the speed of the ball, too. Unfortunately for batter, pitchers have learned how to disguise each pitch so batters cannot distinguish a fastball from a changeup until the ball is over the plate. By then, it is too late to knock the ball out of the park.


Fortunately, for batters, the wooden bat is designed to help them be successful at the plate. The width of the bat fills more horizontal space over the plate and the length of the bat insures that it stretches all the way across the plate. While the length of the bat helps, the barrel only covers a minimal amount of space. Therefore, the batter needs to see the vertical placement of the pitch. This is why so many batters are stymied by the sinker because batters cannot adjust the vertical movement of the ball fast enough to hit it.


Most young batters are told to keep their eyes on the ball. This is actually not easy to do. It is actually better for the batter to watch the pitch as it leaves the hand of the pitcher. Once the ball is released, the batter cannot distinguish the speed because of the physics of velocity. The angular velocity makes it look like the ball is speeding up as it approaches the bat, but it is most likely traveling at the same rate of speed it was when it left the pitcher’s hand. Since the entire act of hitting a baseball needs to be done in a matter of milliseconds, keeping an eye on the ball does not make much of a difference.


Interestingly, the best hitters today like to be physically fit and muscular, but the brain is what performs the most difficult part. The brain needs to know when to swing and where to swing. It has to make that decision in less than half of a second. In comparison, it takes about a tenth of a second to blink. A baseball player has to have more than just hand-eye coordination, he has to have amazing timing.


One thing that batters notice is that the time they hit the ball feels like a minor collision. With a wooden bat, that collision can be slightly tempered. The bat will react the moment it comes in contact with the ball, and it does so differently than a BBCOR bat does. We encourage you to give our M^Powered wooden bats a try so you can see the difference an outstanding wooden bat makes on your statistics at the plate. Contact us via email at info@mpoweredbaseball.com or call us at 1-877-NO-CORKS.