About this book
This book describes the physics of baseball and softball, assuming that the reader has a background in both physics and mathematics at the high school level. The physics is explained in a conversational style, and illustrated with experimental results obtained both in the laboratory and in the field. Simple equations are also used in order to model the experimental results and to test whether the explanations are actually valid. The subject matter provides an excellent opportunity to explain physics in an interesting manner, given the universal popularity of baseball and softball as pastimes. There is also the interaction between a bat and ball, which is a classic problem in physics involving large forces, short time intervals, momentum, and energy transfer, vibration, rotation, and the different physical properties of the wood (or aluminum) of the bat, and the ball. The flight of the ball through the air is another fascinating example of physics in action, involving the effects of gravity, air resistance and ball spin on the ball trajectory. For those readers who already know quite a bit of physics and who are comfortable with mathematical equations, additional material is provided in the appendices. The book also describes many simple projects for readers who wish to perform their own experiments, whether it is for fun, for a school project, or both.
Advance Praise for The Physics of Baseball & Softball
“…so compelling that I read every page. Rod has compiled a wonderful selection of insight and discovery to the game...I think it would be a great reference book for a physics teacher to enrich lectures or explain topics.”
-Prof. Lloyd Smith, School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, Washington State University