The Murphy Homer / Non-homer
It doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things, because even without Danny Murphy’s homerun, the Mets still eek out a win by one run.
But, there’s one thing bothering me about the fly ball he hit to the right field corner in the sixth inning of last night’s ballgame.
While everyone else is focusing on where the ball “hit” or “didn’t hit” the Subway sign, I’m looking at where the ball landed on the field, and what it did afterward — which was bounce toward the right field wall, and into the Modell’s sign.
Now, the Subway sign / overhang is a full eight feet in front of the Modell’s sign. So if the ball deflected off the Subway sign, how did it continue toward the Modell’s sign, rather than reverse direction and roll back toward the infield?
That one TV angle that makes it look as though the ball seemed to change direction while in the air in front of the Subway sign, I think, may be an optical illusion. I don’t think it’s possible to change direction via a deflection, and then change direction again after hitting the ground. You’d have to impart some very weird overspin on the ball, and that generally only happens with towering fly balls (the kind Dave Kingman used to hit). Murphy’s shot was more between a line drive and a high fly ball, and I don’t know that it could’ve had the type of overspin necessary to bounce that way. It looked to me like it had backspin.
Any physics experts out there to impart some wisdom? No doubt this issue is going to come up again at some point.