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October 25, 2013

Raising Aces

How Long Home Runs Happen

by Doug Thorburn


Two months ago, I introduced an article dubbed Elevator Action, which was inspired by the tendency for elevated pitches to leave the yard. The concept behind the piece was that it can often be more damaging to miss targets within the strike zone than is to sail pitches out of reach. Pitchers who pound the zone but lack the command to places pitches on its periphery will suffer the consequences.

The greatest weakness of that August article was its sample size, as I merely collected the longest home runs hit on a given day and took a cursory look at the elements that contributed to those drives. In the conclusion, I mentioned the need to dig deeper in order to further substantiate this link between missed targets within the strike zone and the damage inflicted by opposing batters. Now that the regular season is under wraps, we have the opportunity to look back on the 2013 season and see whether the theories of Elevator Action hold up to deeper scrutiny. Under the microscope are, in ascending order, the eight longest home runs hit this season, each of which exceeded 470 feet according to the ESPN Home RunTracker.

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Related Content:  Home Runs,  Elevation

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<< Previous Article
Dollar Sign on the Mus... (10/25)
<< Previous Column
Premium Article Raising Aces: Bush Lea... (10/18)
Next Column >>
Premium Article Raising Aces: Bush Lea... (11/01)
Next Article >>
Premium Article Minor League Update: A... (10/25)

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