Title

Getting it Right: Handedness and Longevity in Major-League Baseball Players

Type of Proposal

Oral Presentation

Start Date

22-3-2018 9:20 AM

End Date

22-3-2018 10:40 AM

Location

Alumni Auditorium B

Faculty

Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

Faculty Sponsor

Dr. Kenneth Cramer

Abstract/Description of Original Work

The objective of this paper was to produce a recent analysis of major league baseball statistics to test the hypothesis of a link between handedness and longevity of lifespan (Hicks, Johnson, Cuevas, Deharo, & Bautista, 1994; Abel & Kruger, 2004; Coren & Halpern, 1991). It was hypothesized that individuals who are right handed would have greater longevity, or lifespan, than people who are left handed. Over 19,000 major league baseball players (from 1833 to the present) were divided into (a) left or right throwers, and (b) left, right, or switch batters; and were compared according to how many days they had lived (final sample size = 8610). This sample was obtained from the Lahman, 2017 from the Leddy Library at the University of Windsor. Both height and weight were removed as covariates because these aspects have an impact on health and lifespan longevity. Results showed no significant difference in longevity when analyzed by either throwing or batting, where average longevity was 69 years. These null findings suggest that an individual, on average, will have the same lifespan longevity whether they are left or right handed. Implications for further study are outlined including the option of accounting for the covariance of race and ethnicity as well as expanding the sample size beyond professional athletes.

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Mar 22nd, 9:20 AM Mar 22nd, 10:40 AM

Getting it Right: Handedness and Longevity in Major-League Baseball Players

Alumni Auditorium B

The objective of this paper was to produce a recent analysis of major league baseball statistics to test the hypothesis of a link between handedness and longevity of lifespan (Hicks, Johnson, Cuevas, Deharo, & Bautista, 1994; Abel & Kruger, 2004; Coren & Halpern, 1991). It was hypothesized that individuals who are right handed would have greater longevity, or lifespan, than people who are left handed. Over 19,000 major league baseball players (from 1833 to the present) were divided into (a) left or right throwers, and (b) left, right, or switch batters; and were compared according to how many days they had lived (final sample size = 8610). This sample was obtained from the Lahman, 2017 from the Leddy Library at the University of Windsor. Both height and weight were removed as covariates because these aspects have an impact on health and lifespan longevity. Results showed no significant difference in longevity when analyzed by either throwing or batting, where average longevity was 69 years. These null findings suggest that an individual, on average, will have the same lifespan longevity whether they are left or right handed. Implications for further study are outlined including the option of accounting for the covariance of race and ethnicity as well as expanding the sample size beyond professional athletes.