MATH ACTIVITY
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Designing Replica Ballparks

Purpose

To design a Babe Ruth League baseball field that is a replica of a Major League Baseball park.

Materials

Camden Yards

The Story
Cal Ripken Jr. has been busy since he retired. He has been working on projects that bring joy to kids. One of his favorite projects is the building of replica baseball fields. These fields will be made to look exactly like real Major League fields, only smaller. It won't be long before Babe Ruth League players will be playing on small models of Camden Yards, Memorial Stadium, Fenway Park, and Yankee Stadium.
The Board of Trustees of the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation wants proposals. They will decide which Major League baseball field is the next one to be modeled. As an architect, your job is to prepare a plan for the miniature version of your favorite Major League field. The Board of Trustees will approve the building of fields based on the quality of the proposal.

Procedure

Before you can prepare your proposal, you must select a Major League field to model. Use the Major League Ballpark Information Sheet to gather information about the field you choose.
The first, and most important, part of your proposal, is a scale drawing. The Board of Trustees only wants to see a scale drawing showing the new dimensions of the field. You must use the information about your field, along with information about Babe Ruth League fields in the table below; to calculate the proportions needed to complete your drawing. Title this part of your proposal: Scale Drawing.

TABLE 1-1: Major League vs. Babe Ruth League Dimensions

                                        MAJOR LEAGUE   vs.  BABE RUTH LEAGUE

Distance between Bases

90’

60’

Distance to Pitchers Mound

60’ 6”

46’

Pitcher’s Mound Diameter

18’

10’

Distance from Home to 2nd

See Extension

See Extension

Angle Measure for the Base Path

90°

90°

 
The second part of your proposal is a paragraph explaining your drawing. It should show the math work that you used to create the drawing. Explanations must be included for all of your work if you hope to persuade the Board of Trustees to select your field. Title this part of your proposal: Calculations and Explanations.

The third part of your proposal is a written explanation of why you chose this particular Major League field. Provide the history and other interesting facts about the field, explain why this field is important to you, and tell why you think that kids would want to play on this field. Title this part of your proposal: Reasons. Information about Major League fields can be found at http://www.baseballparks.com or at www.mlb.com.

Conclusion

Now it is time to give your plan to the Board of Trustees. Prepare a short oral presentation, in which you will explain the key parts of your plan. Be sure to highlight the most important information about your field. Try to convince the Board to build your field.


This activity was developed by the Event-Based Science Institute with generous support from the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation. A teacher version of this and all other baseball/math activities is available free from the Institute. This Designing Replica Ballpark activity was written by Bill Barnes, mathematics teacher at New Town High School, Owings Mill, MD.  

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