It’s Opening Day! Weather plays a big role in how far home-runs go

Temperature and air pressure play a big role in whether or not a ball clears the fence

FILE - New York Yankees' Aaron Judge watches his home run against the Boston Red Sox during the sixth inning of a baseball game July 16, 2022, in New York. Judge and the Yankees make their first 2023 trip to Fenway Park for the opener of a weekend series against Rafael Devers and the Red Sox. New York went 13-6 against Boston last year, outscoring the Red Sox 109-76. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II, File) (Frank Franklin Ii, Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

ROANOKE, Va. – For baseball fans, it’s (almost) the most wonderful time of the year. That comes in October!

One of the most exciting things in the sport is watching guys like Aaron Judge, Shohei Ohtani, Yordan Alvarez and Freddie Freeman round the bases after a loud crack of the bat sends the ball over the fence.

It may seem obvious that the weather plays a huge role in baseball. Automatically, you think of wind and rain.

It’s the temperature and air pressure that can sometimes be the difference between a routine fly ball and John Sterling’s famous “It is high! It is far. It is gone!”

Warmer air is less dense than cold air, which means the ball can travel farther.

How temperature affects the flight of a baseball

You tend to see more homeruns hit in the summer because of this.

You also see more homeruns being hit in Coors Field - home of the Colorado Rockies. At a mile above sea level, the air pressure is lower than most ballparks. Therefore, it is less dense.

How air pressure/altitude affects the flight of a baseball

If you look at the ballpark’s dimensions, you’ll notice that right and left field are 20 feet farther than your average ballpark. They’ve even added taller fences, but it’s no match for the atmosphere (it seems).

Whether you’re pulling for Trea Turner, Ronald Acuña or Vlad Guerrero Jr., we hope you enjoy the start to yet another season in Major League Baseball.

About the Author:

Meteorologist Chris Michaels is an American Meteorological Society (AMS) Certified Broadcaster, forecasting weather conditions in southwest Virginia on WSLS 10 News from 5 a.m. to 7 a.m. weekdays on Virginia Today.