Dodgers News: Dave Roberts Hoped Humidor In All 30 Stadiums Would Bring ‘Consistency’

MLB made several changes to its baseballs last season, instructing manufacturer Rawlings to loosen the tension on the first of three wool windings within the ball and cracking down on pitchers using sticky substances.

Five teams also added a humidor to their stadium, bringing the total to 10. Beginning with the 2022 season, MLB required all 30 clubs to store their baseballs in a humidor prior to games in an effort to control some of the inconsistencies between them.

“I certainly think it adds consistency as far as the feel of the baseball,” Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts recently said of all 30 ballparks utilizing a humidor this season.

“Elevation also matters; whether we’re playing at altitude or playing at sea level. But I guess I’m just not smart enough to know how much of an impact it’s going to make.”

Humidors work by bringing baseballs to an average humidity, which means in a dry park, baseballs will become more humid and heavier. In humid parks, however, a humidor will dry out the baseballs and make them lighter.

Whether because of all teams now having a humidor or just composition of baseballs in play, they have not traveled like in years past and left players confused, if not frustrated.

The Arizona Diamondbacks were one of the first teams to install a humidor at Chase Field in 2018. It resulted in a drop in home runs and exit velocities due to the baseball’s heavier weight.

Roberts questioned humidor, baseballs

There have been multiple instances when a Dodgers player made solid contact, only for a drive or fly ball to be caught deep in the outfield.

One such case came on a Gavin Lux fly ball at Dodger Stadium, which Roberts and others could not understand how it didn’t carry for a home run. It came off Lux’s bat at a 103.4 mph exit velocity and launch angle of 28 degrees.

“I’m not a conspiracy theorist, but it just seems like something’s different,” Roberts said. “But I don’t know. I was surprised.”

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