All Things Bubba

Because how can you not love a baseball player named "Bubba"?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Hammerin' Janish strikes again

Paul Janish homered again today, as the Reds clobbered the D-Backs. Janish has been playing well lately. He had a pinch-hit single yesterday, and was 1 for 2 with a walk today. I doubt he's really playing for anything, though. I think he's pretty much guaranteed to get a roster spot...while Orlando Cabrera is guaranteed to get the starting SS job. So no matter how Janish plays, he'll probably be a backup infielder for the Reds this season.

On a completely different topic...I found this article from the NY Times interesting.

Psychologists have long studied the grunts and winks of nonverbal communication, the vocal tones and facial expressions that carry emotion. A warm tone of voice, a hostile stare — both have the same meaning in Terre Haute or Timbuktu, and are among dozens of signals that form a universal human vocabulary.

But in recent years some researchers have begun to focus on a different, often more subtle kind of wordless communication: physical contact. Momentary touches, they say — whether an exuberant high five, a warm hand on the shoulder, or a creepy touch to the arm — can communicate an even wider range of emotion than gestures or expressions, and sometimes do so more quickly and accurately than words.

And there's a sports connection:

To see whether a rich vocabulary of supportive touch is in fact related to performance, scientists at Berkeley recently analyzed interactions in one of the most physically expressive arenas on earth: professional basketball. Michael W. Kraus led a research team that coded every bump, hug and high five in a single game played by each team in the National Basketball Association early last season.

In a paper due out this year in the journal Emotion, Mr. Kraus and his co-authors, Cassy Huang and Dr. Keltner, report that with a few exceptions, good teams tended to be touchier than bad ones. The most touch-bonded teams were the Boston Celtics and the Los Angeles Lakers, currently two of the league’s top teams; at the bottom were the mediocre Sacramento Kings and Charlotte Bobcats.

Of course, correlation is not causation. Maybe good teams are more inclined to be touchy-feely, rather than touching actually improving their performance. Still, it's an interesting idea. Maybe there's good reason for all those high-fives, chest bumps, and rump slaps.

Labels: ,

posted by BubbaFan, 11:39 PM


Add a comment