We've all done it - left a baseball or two (or ten) out in the rain. Not only do they get wet, but they get heavy; they no longer fly true, they sting when you hit them, and they throw off your rhythm.
Many coaches simply throw them away, or allow their players to launch them into adjoining lots with an impromptu home run hitting contest. However, even cheap baseballs cost a dollar apeice, and quality leather balls can be three, five, seven dollars, or more! This says nothing of the truth that a coach can never, ever have too many baseballs.
Can you really afford to throw an otherwise serviceable ball away?
If not, then I suggest that you bake them!
Place as many baseballs as you need to resucitate into a regular, everyday kitchen oven. Please do be sure to allow plenty of room; it goes without saying that the balls should never be exposed to open flame, nor should they be allowed to touch the sides or heating elements of an oven.
Heat the oven to no more than 180 degrees farenheight, then allow the balls to bake for four to five hours. This is no hotter than the interior of your car gets on a hot summer day with the windows rolled up, so don't worry about any damage to the balls.
If the baseballs have been left outside for days or weeks (and still haven't begun to rot), it may take several trips through the oven before you manage to bake enough moisture out to make them usable again. However, if you are patient, you can save yourself some money - and keep from throwing away otherwise perfectly good baseballs - by doing a little baking.
By Author. All Rights Reserved. Date
August 17, 2006
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