NCAA to Use Loaded Baseball to Increase Offense

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A ball shown to fly farther will be used during the NCAA baseball tournament starting in 2015 in an attempt to increase offense.

The Division I baseball committee's decision Tuesday allows conferences to adopt the new ball for regular-season play the same year.

The new ball will have flat seams and be similar to the kind used in professional baseball. A raised-seam ball is now used in the college game.

Clemson's Jack Leggett and Rice's Wayne Graham led the call for a new ball after dialed-back bats put into play in 2011 led to a drop in offense to levels not seen since the pre-1974 wooden-bat era.

Washington State researchers found that the flat-seam ball travels farther, raising the possibility for more home runs.