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Hall Of Fame Broadcaster Blames ‘Climatic Changes’ For Increase In Home Runs

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Network baseball analyst Tim McCarver arrives at the 24th Annual Sports Emmy Awards at the Marriott Marquis on April 21, 2003 in New York City. (credit: Lawrence Lucier/Getty Images)

Network baseball analyst Tim McCarver arrives at the 24th Annual Sports Emmy Awards at the Marriott Marquis on April 21, 2003 in New York City. (credit: Lawrence Lucier/Getty Images)

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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) — A Hall of Fame broadcaster is blaming global warming for the increase in home run totals over the past several seasons.

During Saturday’s Milwaukee Brewers-St. Louis Cardinals game at Busch Stadium, Tim McCarver said “climatic changes” is one of the reasons why more balls are being hit out of the park.

“It has not been proven, but I think ultimately it will be proven that the air is thinner now, there has been climatic changes over the last 50 years in the world and that is one of the reasons that balls are carrying much better now than I remember,” McCarver said during the broadcast. His comments came in the sixth inning after Aramis Ramirez of the Brewers and David Freese of the Cardinals hit home runs.

Joe Bastardi, chief forecaster for WeatherBell.com, took issue with McCarver’s comments.

“It was a stone stupid comment,” Bastardi said on Twitter. “Players are bigger, stronger.”

Bastardi also added that it’s not as warm now as it was from 1930 to 1950.

Michael Mann, Penn State climatologist, told Scientific American that climate change could cause the number of home runs to go down.

“If anything, anthropogenic carbon emissions and global warming should make the atmosphere slightly heavier, because we’re taking carbon that was trapped in the solid earth and releasing to the atmosphere (in the form of CO2), and a warmer atmosphere will hold more water vapor,” Mann told Scientific American. “Both CO2 and water vapor contribute (slightly) to the mass of the atmosphere.”

McCarver did receive backing, though, from The Washington Post’s “Capital Weather Gang,” saying that “the atmosphere has trended warmer and more humid over the last 120-plus years.”

Ironically, McCarver made the comments in a game the reigning National League MVP Ryan Braun was in, the player who failed a performance-enhancing drug test last year before having his suspension overturned due to a technicality.

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