Why are 25 percent of baseball players left-handed, when only 10 percent of the general public is? Consider that:
- While a righty's swing pulls him toward third, a lefty's swing takes him toward first (allowing Ichiro to be well on his way by the time he hits the ball).
- The short right fields in stadiums like Boston's Fenway Park are particularly inviting to power-hitting lefties.
- Most pitchers still are righties, giving left-handed hitters the advantage as they see the ball more clearly. But,
- Because so many teams employ great left-handed hitters for that reason, left-handed specialist pitchers for the bullpen stay in high demand.
- Also, lefty pitchers face first base, allowing them to hold potential base-stealers.
Most astute baseball fans are aware of all these items individually. But collectively, they mean that the structure of the game makes it advantageous to be a southpaw, engineer and baseball fan David Peters argued in 2008