Launch Angle In Baseball And Softball

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It’s no secret that sports are becoming more and more elite as the athletes that play them begin to utilize science to maximize their output. Baseball and softball are no exceptions to this phenomenon. As America’s pastime and two of the biggest college sports for each respective gender, ground is constantly being broken in order to discover new and improved techniques to put out the best players possible. One of the skills that has always been at forefront of refinement has been the swing; athletes want to hit balls faster, harder, and farther. In particular, the launch angle has become an increasingly popular topic of focus the the world of baseball and softball. Launch angle is defined by the MLB as, “the vertical angle at which the ball…show more content…
As defined by the MLB, this critical tool, “measures the speed of the baseball as it comes off the bat, immediately after a batter makes contact”(“What Is a Exit Velocity?” ). The goal of any hitter is to obtain the highest exit velocity they are physically capable of. The harder a batter can hit the ball, the faster the ball will travel and the less time the opposing players have to respond. Strong exit velocity coupled with the right launch angle makes for one mean hitting machine. But how does all of this information relate to softball? A man known as ‘Coach Lisle’ wanted to know just that, and recorded groundwork data based on some of the players he worked with that had the highest percentages of home runs. What he discovered was that, with softball players, “most of them have a max exit velocity of 76-82 mph and an average exit velocity of 64+”(Lisle. “Launch Angles in Baseball and Softball.”). It should be noted that not all players have this sort of exit velocity power, and that weather conditions can also play a huge role in the success of home run hits. The information pertaining to launch angle in terms of baseball players provided by the MLB still rings true for softball players as the core concept is still the same. Where the two sports differ is in terms of exit velocity. While a baseball player needs a 98 mph exit velocity in order to knock a ball out of…show more content…
The answer to this question was unlocked by a Mr. Koosed, who utilizes a simple batting cage as a way to measure launch angles. A formula is provided as distance=height/tan(angle). The goal is to hit a spot at the top of the cage. Mr. Koosed kindly performed the equation with different angles and distances in order to produce the most effective launch angle. Here, the batter should strive for a launch angle of 30 degrees, which can be deduced by hitting the ball upwards towards the top netting, having the ball make contact with the netting 14 feet from where the batter is standing(Lee, Richard. “How To Determine Launch Angles in the Batting Cage.” ). If, for example, a batter hits with a 5 degree launch angle, the ball will not reach the top of the cage until a distance of 91 feet has been obtained, which is less than
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