Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Q&A: Nine innings equals a lot of baseballs

Wow, that's a lot of baseballs

In a nine-inning baseball game, about how many baseballs do the teams go through? And who pays for them?

Baseball teams can go through more than 100 baseballs in a 9-inning game, according to the guys in charge of equipment for the Tampa Bay Rays.

The average lifespan of a ball isn't much — usually no more than about 6 pitches. If it hasn't been fouled off and become a souvenir by then, it has usually gotten scuffed or dirtied and is discarded by the umpires.

Baseballs aren't cheap, either. The home team supplies the balls for each game. The Rays pay about $74 for a dozen balls, so if they use nine dozen per game that's $666. Each team plays 81 home games, so that's $53,946 for just the regular season.

Tradition rules Yanks' backs

I have observed that the New York Yankees do not have the names of the players on the backs of their uniforms. Why?

In a word, tradition. The Yankees, since 1915, have worn pinstripes with the NY logo. Since 1929 they have worn numbers regularly on uniforms. They have never had players' names on the back of the jerseys. And they have no intention of changing.

Hall of Fame catcher Yogi Berra, in his book with Dave Kaplan, You Can Observe A Lot By Watching: What I've Learned About Teamwork From the Yankees and Life, had this to say about that team tradition:

"Uniforms are more than a fashion statement. They're a team's identity. It's like what Jerry Seinfeld said about fans: They don't really root for players, they root for a team's laundry. I still like that the Yankees still don't put players' names on their backs. The team's identity is more important."

We've been four-stormed before

Last week we had four named storms at the same time. Has that ever happened before?

Dr. Jeff Masters, a renowned hurricane expert for the Web site www.weatherunderground.com, says yes, a couple of times. According to a recent item in his blog, he says:

"With four named storms going at once — Gustav, Hanna, Ike and Josephine — the tropics are exceptionally active . . . The last time there were four named systems present on the same day was on Aug. 24, 1999, when Bret, Cindy, Dennis and Emily were all active in the Atlantic. Four hurricanes have occurred simultaneously on two occasions. The first occasion was Aug. 22, 1893. The second time was on Sept. 25-27, 1998, when Georges, Ivan, Jeanne and Karl were all hurricanes.

"There have been five named storms at once — this occurred in 1971, from Sept. 10 to 12." Those storms were Edith, Fern, Ginger, Heidi and Irene.

Q&A: Nine innings equals a lot of baseballs 09/07/08 [Last modified: Tuesday, November 2, 2010 3:59pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. No. 16 USF hangs on at Tulane, off to first 7-0 start

    College

    NEW ORLEANS — After half a season of mismatches, USF found itself in a grudge match Saturday night.

    USF quarterback Quinton Flowers (9) runs for a touchdown against Tulane during the first half of an NCAA college football game in New Orleans, La., Saturday, Oct. 21, 2017. (AP Photo/Derick E. Hingle) LADH103
  2. Lightning buries Penguins (w/video)

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — Ryan Callahan spent a lot of time last season rehabilitating his injured hip alongside Steven Stamkos, who was rehabbing a knee after season-ending surgery. During those hours, Callahan noticed two things about Stamkos: his hunger and his excitement to return this season.

    Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Slater Koekkoek (29) advances the puck through the neutral zone during the first period of Saturday???‚??„?s (10/21/17) game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Pittsburgh Penguins at Amalie Arena in Tampa.
  3. Spain planning to strip Catalonia of its autonomy

    World

    BARCELONA, Spain — The escalating confrontation over Catalonia's independence drive took its most serious turn Saturday as Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy of Spain announced he would remove the leadership of the restive region and initiate a process of direct rule by the central government in Madrid.

    Demonstrators in Barcelona protest the decision to take control of Catalonia to derail the independence movement.
  4. Funeral held for soldier at center of political war of words (w/video)

    Nation

    COOPER CITY — Mourners remembered not only a U.S. soldier whose combat death in Africa led to a political fight between President Donald Trump and a Florida congresswoman but his three comrades who died with him.

    The casket of Sgt. La David T. Johnson of Miami Gardens, who was killed in an ambush in Niger. is wheeled out after a viewing at the Christ The Rock Church, Friday, Oct. 20, 2017  in Cooper City, Fla. (Pedro Portal/Miami Herald via AP) FLMIH102
  5. Chemical industry insider now shapes EPA policy

    Nation

    WASHINGTON — For years, the Environmental Protection Agency has struggled to prevent an ingredient once used in stain-resistant carpets and nonstick pans from contaminating drinking water.

    This is the Dow chemical plant near Freeport, Texas. Before the 2016 election, Dow had been in talks with the EPA to phase out the pesticide chlorpyrifos, which is blamed for disabilities in children. Dow is no longer willing to compromise.