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School of Physics Public Lecture: Presenting Alan Nathan, UIUC
Following Yogi Berra's advice, I will use high-speed video clips to highlight some of the interesting physics underlying the game of baseball. The talk will focus on two broad aspects of the game: the physics of the baseball-bat collision and the flight of the baseball through the air. I will investigate some very practical questions and show how a physicist goes about trying to answer these question. Some examples: what is the "sweet spot" of a bat; how does the batter's grip affect the batted ball; why does aluminum outperform wood; how determines how far a fly travels; how much does a curve ball break; and why is Mariano Rivera such a great pitcher. My talk should have something for everybody, whether your interest is baseball, physics, or the connection between them.