Van Horn: Flat-seamed baseball isn't enough

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 8, 2014 at 2:21 am •  Published: February 8, 2014

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — Arkansas coach Dave Van Horn has reservations about the new baseball the college game plans to use beginning in 2015.

Speaking at the Razorbacks' media day on Friday, Van Horn said the new ball — which features flatter seams — is only a start on the path toward using the same baseball the professionals use.

"I think it's going to be the same ball with flat seams," Van Horn said. "We need to use a flat-seamed ball that's a little harder."

The NCAA Division I baseball committee voted unanimously in November to allow conferences to adopt the new ball for regular-season play next year. The ball, shown by researchers to fly farther, will be used during the NCAA baseball tournament in 2015.

A raised-seam ball is now used in the college game.

Dialed-back bats were put into play in 2011, leading to a drop in offense to levels not seen since the wooden-bat era before 1974. An American Baseball Coaches Association survey last fall found that 87 percent of coaches who responded wanted to make the change in balls.

"We're not using the rock baseball that they use in the big leagues, or in the minor leagues," Van Horn said. "The bats aren't too bad, to be honest with you. That ball's the issue.

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