The Donut Hole in OBA Due to Exit Velocity + Launch Angle

PITTSBURGH – On Friday, Diamond Kinetics’ Technical Advisor Dr. Alan Nathan released a series of tweets explaining the potential results of a batted ball, relative to launch angle and exit velocity. 

In his first tweet seen above, Dr. Nathan references ‘the donut hole’.¹ As it applies to baseball, the donut hole is seen in batted ball results in terms of balls with 70 mph, 90 mph and 110 mph exit velocities (each with a launch angle of 22 degrees). 

In his research, Dr. Nathan found that the results for the batter will be best if the exit velocity of a batted ball is either 70 mph (bloop single) or 110 mph (home run), if you have a launch angle of 22 degrees. More specifically, the donut hole in this example is the gap in batted ball average between 70 mph and 110 mph.

As Dr. Nathan found, a ball with a exit velocity of 90 mph and launch angle of 22 degrees will be a “lazy fly ball” and most likely be an out. 

Below is the series of tweets from Dr. Nathan that further explains the science behind the donut hole: 

— Alan Nathan (@pobguy) July 24, 2015

#DKBaseball

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Footnotes:

  1. The donut hole refers to a gap in the middle of a series.