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56 post(s) found
 

Video Replay

07-01-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
Until this season, video review was only allowed for boundary calls involving home runs, and it happened at the discretion of the umpires, who would leave the field to look at replays and then return to make their decision known.
 

New MLB Rule 7.13 - Video Replay Procedure

06-26-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
OFFICIAL BASEBALL RULE 7.13
Note: The rule is considered "experimental" for the 2014 season
 

Illegal Bat Penalties

06-23-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

Before the batter steps into the box: Under all codes, if detected, the umpire can direct the player to switch to a legal bat. There is no penalty.

The batter is in the box but has not seen a pitch: Under NFHS and pro rules, the batter is considered to have used the illegal bat as soon as he steps into the box.

 

J.D. Drew's 1997 Homer

06-05-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
Background::J.D. Drew hit a monster home run during the 1997 season, but it hit a tree in flight (while still 85' off the ground) so the length of the homer could not be determined. After reading an article in the newspaper about this problem, including some estimates by the coaches and a request for some help ("Now there's a science problem for you," FSU coach Mike Martin said.
 

MLB's Zone Evaluation System

06-04-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
Major League baseball replaced the QuesTec system with Zone Evaluation in all ballparks during the 2009 season, with triple the data collection. The system records the ball's position in flight more than 20 times before it reaches the plate. After each umpire has a plate assignment, the system generates a disk that provides an evaluation of accuracy and illustrates any inconsistencies with the strike zone. Zone Evaluation operated successfully in 99.8 percent of the 2,430 games played during the 2009 season, according to MLB.
 

The QuesTec Information System

05-30-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
QuesTec is a digital media company known mostly for its Umpire Information System (UIS) which is used by Major League Baseball for the purpose of providing feedback and evaluation of Major League umpires. The QuesTec company, based out of Deer Park, New York, has been mostly involved in television replay and graphics throughout its history. In 2001, however, the company signed a 5-year contract with Major League Baseball to use its pitch tracking technology as a means to review the performance of home plate umpires during baseball games. The contract has continued through the 2008 season by annual extension and topped out at 11 ballparks. In 2009 it was replaced by MLB's Zone Evaluation.
 

What About Filling the Cavity with Superballs?

05-27-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
This is an interesting question. A more generic question is whether there is some substance that is compressible (so as to store energy) but not so compressible that it does not return the energy to the ball. This is a question that is worth thinking hard about and worth doing some experimental measurements to study the effect. Such experiments are currently in the planning stage.
 

But is there a "trampoline" effect?

05-22-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
The trampoline effect is quite well known in hollow metal bats. The thin metal shell actually compresses during the collision with the ball and springs back, much like a trampoline, resulting in much less loss of energy (and therefore a higher batted ball speed) than would be the case if the ball hit a completely rigid surface. The loss of energy that I referred to comes mostly from the ball. During the collision, the ball compresses much like a spring. The initial energy of motion (kinetic energy) gets converted to compressional energy (potential energy) that is stored up in the spring. The spring then expands back out again, pushing against the bat, and converting the compressional energy back into kinetic energy.
 

What negative effect does this have on performance?

05-19-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
The efficiency of the bat in transferring energy to the ball in part depends on the weight of the part of the bat near the impact point of the ball. For a given bat speed, a heavier bat will produce a higher hit ball speed than a lighter bat. That is why the head of a golf driver is heavier than that of an iron: you want to drive the ball further. By reducing the weight at the barrel end of the bat, the efficiency of the bat is reduced, giving rise to a reduced hit ball speed and less distance on a long fly ball. This is the downside of using a corked bat.
 

The Physics of a Corked Bat

05-16-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
The natural frequency of wooden bats is around 250 cycles per second, or 250 Hertz. Because the ball leaves the bat so soon (1 millisecond), the energy transfer to the ball is not too efficient. If the bat has been hollowed and corked, it's no longer as stiff and it will get an even lower natural frequency and an even less efficient transfer of energy to the bat. The baseball bounces off the bat faster than the cork can store the energy that could be put back in the ball. The cork might deaden the sound of a hollowed out bat, but it doesn't propel the ball. It can't. So, balls hit with corked bats don't go as far.
 

Bat Physics. The "Sweet Spot"

05-13-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
A baseball bat has three "sweet spots"; one of them is called its "center of percussion" (COP). That's physicist talk for the point where the ball's impact causes the smallest shock to your hands. If you hit a baseball closer to the bat's handle than to the center of percussion, you'll feel a slight force pushing the handle back into the palm of your top hand. If you hit the ball farther out than the COP, you'll feel a slight push on your fingers in the opposite direction, trying to open up your grip. But if you hit the ball right on the COP, you won't feel any force on the handle. To find the COP on a bat, try this simple activity.
 

Curve Ball Physics

05-09-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
The secret to understanding a curveball is the speed of the air moving past the ball's surface. A curve has topspin, meaning that the top of the ball is moving in the same direction as the throw and the OPPOSITE direction of air flow relative to the direction of the throw. Vice versa for the bottom of the ball. It moves in the SAME direction as the air flow relative to the throw. See Bernoulli's principle, which says that the lower velocity of the air over the ball creates more pressure on the ball, which is what makes the curveball break downward. (Thanks to Lizbeth for correcting this info)
 

Aerodynamics & Curve Balls

05-05-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

For over a century baseball fans have debated the question of whether a "curve ball does in fact curve". Only rarely has there been objective scientific testing in order to verify what is so obviously the appearance of a curve.

Igor Sikorsky's interest had stemmed from a phone call he received from United Aircraft's Lauren (Deac) Lyman who over lunch with Walter Neff of United Airlines, had discussed the question of the trajectory of a baseball.

Mr. Sikorsky, who has a wind tunnel, called his engineers together presenting the problem as follows: "Here we have a solid sphere, moving rapidly in space and rotating on a vertical axis. You see? ... the object is to elude the man with the stick". It should be noted that baseball was a rather foreign endeavor to Mr. Sikorsky.

 

The Physics of Baseball

05-01-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

To hit a ball the maximum possible distance, the trajectory off the bat should have a 35-degree angle.

A line drive travels 100 yards in 4 seconds. A fly to the outfield travels 98 yards in 4.3 seconds.

An average head wind (10 mph) can turn a 400-foot home run into a 370-foot routine out.

A curveball that seems to break over 14 inches never actually deviates from a straight line more than 3 1/2 inches. Part of the ball's deviation from a straight line is governed by the equation:
 

The Composite Bat

04-28-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
For more than forty years since the advent of the aluminum bat, rules committees have been dealing with the daunting task of balancing advances in bat composition and manufacturing techniques against the integrity of the game as well as potential safety hazards. Now, to further complicate the problem, there is one more type of bat: the composite.Starting in 2011, BESR was out, BBCOR is in and ABI testing is an interesting question mark for future years. There are legal composites, illegal composites, composites that look like wood bats, composites that look like aluminum bats, half and half bats and God knows what else will appear in the coming years. Another chapter is currently being written in the evolution of the baseball bat.
 

Bat + Ball = Excitement

04-24-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

Ever since the first recorded game, June 19, 1846 at Elysian Field in Hoboken, New Jersey, the spirit of baseball has swept America off its feet. Although changes have altered the sport throughout the years, the foundation upon which baseball was built still remains the same. That foundation is the classic conflict between the pitcher and batter. It is this conflict that continues to amaze the older fans and attract the new ones.

 

The 'Clank' of the Bat

04-22-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

Amateur baseball players use aluminum baseball bats most commonly and the bats are here to stay. These bats, however, at first were not without problems. Some were not strong enough and would bend when hit with a baseball. At times, it was found that the rubber plug at the end of the bat would pop off. Replacement of the plug was necessary. For the most part, these problems have now been corrected.
 

Brett's Pine Tar Bat

04-17-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

George Brett of the Kansas City Royals caused quite a stir with his Hillerich and Bradsby pine tar bat in 1983. On July 24th, Brett hit a home run off Yankee reliever Goose Gossage in the ninth inning to give the Royals a 5-4 lead. Because the bat had pine tar beyond the legal limit of 18 inches, measuring from the bat handle, the home plate umpire disallowed the round-tripper. As a matter of fact, I recall that Brett had pine tar halfway into the Louisville Slugger trademark. However, this decision was later reversed and the pine tar home run did count. Kansas City ultimately defeated the Yankees, 5-4.


 

New and Improved

04-14-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

Born in New York on February 23,1963, Bobby Bonilla uses one of the Hillerich and Bradsbys' improved 1992 model bats. I have one of Bobby's bats in front of me, and above the Louisville Slugger logo he autographs his bat Roberto Bonilla. This genuine model S-318 has specifications that include a medium handle, a slightly larger than 2 1/2 inch diameter barrel, a 35 inch length and just over 32 ounces. The barrel is rounded and the center of balance is above the trademark.
 

Warm-up Bats

04-11-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

Weighted on deck warm-up bats and other devices should be used with extreme caution. The five foot on-deck circle gives the next batter an opportunity to prepare for his turn at bat. It is located 13 feet behind home plate and 37 feet to the right or left.

The Bratt on-deck bat is shaped like a regular bottle bat. It has a red plastic coating from the trademark to the end of the 2 5/8 barrel. This bat weighs 4 pounds 1 ounce, and is 34 inches long. It is manufactured in Lynn, Massachusetts.

 

Why Fungo?

04-07-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

In order to play well in the game of baseball, relentless hours of practice are of the utmost importance. To properly practice, teams should have two Fungo bats. X Bats manufactures three models. These models are made of maple wood and used mostly by professionals.

The wood Infield Fungo is 33 or 34 inches in length with a thin handle and scaled down barrel. This bat is designed for control, accuracy and the ability to place the ball in all directions. Using this bat to simulate regular game conditions will give infielders the necessary practice to react properly during games. Resembling this Infield Fungo is X Bat's all-purpose Fungo.

 

The Trademark Legend and Boning the Bat

04-03-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

It was easy to realize that millions of baseball bats with a brand trademark are manufactured each year. Why are these trademarks so vital? The philosophy of Hillerich and Bradsby on the trademark states that "the strongest part of a wood bat is the grain. We brand our bats with the grain of the wood exactly ninety degrees either side of it. Therefore, if you keep the trademark up, the grain will be facing the pitcher, whether you are a right or left handed batter." It is important to remember that the turn of the batters' wrist may vary. This will determine the proper position of the trademark in order to hit the ball on top the grain.
 

The Adirondacks

03-31-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
When Reggie Jackson, of the New York Yankees, hit three consecutive home runs in he sixth game of the 1977 World Series against the Los Angeles Dodgers, he used an Adirondack "Big Stick" bat. The Adirondack bat has an interesting history. Sometime before World War II, Edwin McLaughin set up a small sawmill and woodworking shop in Dolgeville, New York. He produced dimension stock for the woodworking industry and billets for the producers of baseball bats. In 1945 he was joined by Charles Millard and together they formed he partnership of McLaughlin and Millard. In the spring of 1946, McLaughlin and Millard began making baseball bats. They knew that they were located in an area plentiful with Northern white ash, the best quality wood for manufacturing baseball bats. In that same year, Hal Schumacher, a very good friend and former New York Giant pitcher joined the firm of McLaughin and Millard. His responsibility was managing Professional and dealer sales for the business.
 

Minor League Sluggers

03-27-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

Who is the Home Run King of Professional Baseball in the USA? Prior to Barry Bonds' feat in 2001, it was Joe Bauman. In 1954 he hit 72 home runs in just 138 games. This 6 foot 5 inch, 245 pound first baseman played for the Roswell (New Mexico) Rockets in the Class C Longhorn League.

I spoke with Joe, who still lives in Roswell, for the purposes of this article.  He said that he used a Louisville Slugger, 35 inches in length and weighing 34 ounces, a Model S-2 Vern Stephens bat. Bauman, often called "Joltin' Joe", was 32 years old when he hit his record breaking 72 home runs. Until then, the Minor League record was 69 home runs, set in 1933 by Joe Hauser of the Minneapolis Millers of the American Association. Hauser's record was tied in 1948 by Bob Crues of the Amarillo Gold Sox.

 

The Most Popular Model

03-24-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »


Hillerich and Bradsby have over 300 Pro models on record today. They also have 20,000 specification cards in the Pro model file.  For example, both Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron used similar model bats. However, Ruth's bat weighed 42 ounces and Aaron's weighed 33 ounces. The model bat most popular today is that of Eddie Malone of the Chicago White Sox, for whom the bat Model M I 10 is named. Bats also have nicknames such as Timber, Lumber, Willow, Black Death, Black Betsy and Stick. Give Hillerich and Bradsby credit for manufacturing millions of baseball bats for more than 115 years. Their bats were, and still are, made in America.
 

More Baseball, More Trees

03-23-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
At this point in history, it was evident that baseball was here to stay. The challenge of every play and the excitement of the fans increased attendance every year. Bat manufacturers realized the importance of continued research in order to supply the best quality wood for their products. Hillerich and Bradsby began manufacturing baseball bats as a small concern at the turn of the century. By comparison, in today's bat industry, it takes thousands of trees each year to supply the bat demand.
 

Hank Greenberg

03-13-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

Fred Haney, the manager of the St. Louis Browns, said, "Hank Greenberg puts more thought, effort and conscientiousness into his work than any other player in the league and, to my mind, he is the best competitor in the league." These words most accurately express the true spirit of Hank Greenberg. Greenberg'' overwhelming statistics are the result of the combination of his talents and his 35 inch, 34 ounce Louisville Slugger. During' overwhelming statistics are the result of the combination of his talents and his 35 inch, 34 ounce Louisville Slugger. During Greenberg'' abbreviated career that began with the Detroit Tigers, he had 1,628 hits, 331 home runs and a batting average of .313.

 

Stripes for Goose

03-10-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
The word special can be appropriately applied to the Leon "Goose"" Goslin stripped Louisville baseball bat. While playing left field for the St. Louis Browns, Goose came up with a phenomenal idea. Before the 1932 baseball season, Willis Johnson, the secretary of the Browns, developed this idea and devised the "War Club". As I recall, most of the bats at that time had a natural finish and were of one color.. Goslin's bats had twelve green longitudinal stripes that started at the knob and widened along the face and over the barrel end. His bats were always 34 inches long and weighed at least 37 ounces. 
 

Hanna Bats

03-06-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
The Hanna Manufacturing Company originated in Athens, Georgia in 1911. They were known for making handles for shovels, hand tools and farm implements. In 1926, Hanna started making toy bats for department stores and a short time later the company was making bats for sporting goods stores, colleges and the Major Leagues. They manufactured bats until going out of business in 1976.
 

Heinie's Bottle Bat & 1920's Baseball

03-03-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

Heinie Grohs' unusual bottle bat was the largest made. The barrel was 2 3/4 inches beyond the trademark and tapered sharply to the handle. In 1919, Groh was playing for the Cincinnati Reds. This was the year that he, along with his famous bottle bat, finished fourth in batting in the National League. His average was .310.

Also in 1919, the thunder from pitcher Babe Ruth's' bat could be heard when he hit 29 home runs for the Boston Red Sox to lead the American League. He was purchased by the New York Yankees from Boston before the 1920 season for $125,000. Ruth, now playing the outfield, used a Louisville Slugger Model R-43 with a medium barrel, 36 inches in length and weighing 42 ounces. Babe Ruth, often called "Bambino", hit 54 home runs in 1920 and 59 in 1921.


 

Pay for an Autograph

02-25-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
As the years progressed, J.F. Hillerich and Son introduced still another innovative idea involving their bats and Honus Wagner. In 1905, Wagner, the shortstop for the Pittsburgh Pirates, became the first player ever to sign a contract with Hillerich to have his autograph burned into the wood of the barrel of his Louisville Slugger. Tyrus Cobb, centerfielder for the Detroit Tigers, was another player who also began his illustrious reign in baseball with a Louisville Slugger in his hand. Often called "The Georgia Peach", Cobb was one of baseballs' greatest players. He was a fierce competitor with a lifetime batting average of .367. Honus Wagner, one of the greatest all-around players, broke into the Majors hitting .344. Called "The Flying Dutchman" , Wagner was considered the best shortstop ever to play that position. Did you know that these two great players used the same style bat? Both bats had a large barrel with tapered, thick handle. Cobb was one of the last players to use the once popular split-handed grip. He also taught this special technique to Tris Speaker and to Heinie Manush of the Detroit Tigers..
 

Harvest the Field Or Hit the Ball

02-21-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
Now, let us focus on a rather unique bat that resembled a hand-held sickle. The inventor, Emile Kinst, applied for and had his bat patented in 1906. His bat featured useful improvements that enabled the batter to strike the ball in various directions. The handle resembled that of a regular bat up to the trademark. However, beyond the trade mark, there were small longitudinal grooves as well as a somewhat flat concave curve that continued along the hitting surface to the end of the bat.
 
The longitudinal grooves on the handle continued along both sides of the hitting surface. The face or concave part of the hitting surface had three larger grooves. The center groove was straight and the two outer grooves bowed outward. These aided in preventing a fly or foul tip by engaging the surface of the ball when hit. By hitting the ball at certain points of the bat, the ball could be driven to left, center or right field. 
 

Spalding's Mushroom

02-16-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
Spalding stamped the word Mushroom above their small trademark. They emphasized quality, balance and the knob arrangement at the end of the bat. This combination enabled the batter to get a better distribution of weight over the entire length of the bat. This advantage was not possible to achieve under the old construction. Spalding felt as though the Mushroom bat with the round knob was the perfect bat. The Mushroom Model M, plain or special finish, and Model MT, taped handle, each sold for $1.

The Spalding Gold Medal Bat, according to their advertisements, was made of the best quality white ash. When purchased, this bat was inspected and registered with the model, weight, length and timber. It was available with gold or plain finish, taped and carried a diamond-shaped guarantee card. If any part of the bat proved defective during the season in which it was purchased, it could be returned with the guarantee card to any retailer or dealer that carried Spalding bats.
 

Whose Bat Do You Use?

02-10-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

The Louisville Slugger trademark on each bat led to the branding of player signatures on the barrel of the bats. Until then, players carved their initials or in some other way marked the knob or barrel of their bats. Baseball players using Louisville slugger bats before the turn of the century included Willie Keeler, Hugh Duffy, Pete Browning, John McGraw, Hugh Jennings, Honus Wagner and the Delaney brothers, just to name a few.

"Bud" Hillerich earned a partnership in his father's business in 1897 and the name of the company was then changed to "J.F. Hillerich and Son". At the turn of the century, A.G. Spalding and brothers, being in the sporting goods business, were advertising and selling their very popular Mushroom and Gold Seal bats. Wright and Ditson were also selling their Nap Lajole bats, featuring the new and unique double ring handle. A.J. Reach baseball bats also added to the highly competitive business of manufacturing bats.

 

Hillerich to the Rescue

02-07-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

An important event happened in 1884, which is now frozen in history. This event involved a broken bat and a young woodworker. During the 1884 baseball season, John Hillerich, a woodworker for his father and a good amateur ballplayer, was in the stands watching 'The Louisville Eclipse' of The Professional American Association play. During this game, Pete "The Gladiator" Browning, star outfielder, broke his favorite bat and became very frustrated. After the game, young Hillerich invited Pete to his Dads' woodworking shop. He claimed that he could create a new bat for Pete.
 

The Early Restrictions

02-03-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

In 1859, The Professional National Association of Baseball Players Governing Committee voted in favor of the first limitation on bat size. The limitation specified that bats may be no larger than 2 1/2 inches in diameter and that they may be of any length. As we shall see, several more changes evolved from this limitation in the forthcoming years.
 

BYOB (Bring Your Own BAT)

01-30-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

Numerous changes were made in all aspects of the game of  baseball during the first six years. At this time, each player was responsible for selecting baseball bats for themselves, and there were no restrictions as to length, size or width. Bill Deane, Senior Research Associate at the National Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York has on record a well documented account of a baseball game played on June 19,1846 at Elysian Field in Hoboken, New Jersey. This game was the first played under the Alexander Cartwright rules, which included a 9 inning game, 9 players on each team and 3 outs per side. However baseball players made their own bats and as a result, many different sizes and shapes were used.
 

The Evolution of the Baseball Bat

01-29-2014  |  By: Bernie Mussill edited by Steve Orinick |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

...from the first crack to the 'clank'

Come travel with me many years back into history and let us study "The Evolution of the Baseball Bat". I am sure that each of us at one time or another has had the urge to skip a stone across a lake or to pitch, catch, throw or bat some type of ball. In Europe, Nicholas Grudich played Lupka with other boys by using a five inch round pointed stick that was set at an angle on the ground and hit with a flat bat. From these types of activities came groups of boys playing Rounders, Flyball, Townball and Caddy.

Townball was a game involving twenty to thirty boys in a field attempting to catch a ball hit by a tosser. The tosser used a four inch flit bat with a tapered handle so his hands could grip it firmly for control and leverage. Even though history is sketchy at this time, I believe that it is safe to say that from this idea came the modern day baseball bat that is used in every game to thrill fans all over the world.

 

But Wait - Bat Weight is not as important as "Swing Weight" (moment-of-inertia)!

01-23-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

There is a big problem with the discussion of bat weight that I have summarized in this article. All of the physics used to derive the optimum mass and the batted ball speed assume that the ball hits the bat at its center-of-mass. This very rarely happens - hits at the sweet spot are several inches from the center-of-mass. There is another very important parameter of the bat which affects how quickly you can swing a bat, and what the final ball speed is. This parameter involves the distribution of mass along the length of the bat and how that mass distribution affects the motion of a rotating object. In physics we refer to this parameter as the moment of inertia. It turns out that the moment-of-inertia (or "swing weight") matters more than mass..
 

Rules of Thumb for Recommended Bat Weights

01-21-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

The plots above were obtained by using the Bat ChooserTM machine to determine the Ideal Bat WeightTM for a specific player. The data proves the point that bat weight affects both swing speed and batted ball velocity. But, how does an amateur player, without access to this machine, estimate his/her optimum (or ideal) bat weight in order to get the best batted ball speed and still maintain control over the bat? Using the results of a large database of measurements* from the Bat Chooser instrument, Bahill and his colleagues have come up with up set of basic rules of thumb which can help any player estimate the recommended bat weight he or she should be using in order to obtain the highest performance possible. If you want more detailed rules, or information about how Bahill and his colleagues arrived at these rules of thumb I would strongly recommend reading his book.[8](Note: For calculating bat weight from the formulas in the table, use height in inches, weight in pounds and age in years.)
 

Bat Weight, Swing Speed, and Batted Ball Velocity

01-13-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

Anyone who has swung a bat knows that it is easier to swing a lighter bat than it is to swing a heavier bat. More importantly, it is possible to swing a lighter bat faster than a heavier bat. Exactly how the bat swing speed is related to bat weight for a given player is a little harder to determine. Terry Bahill[2,7,8] and his colleague have extensively studied the relationship between bat swing speeds and bat weights for a wide variety of players. Bahill developed the Bat ChooserTM machine to measure bat swing speed, and uses the results to determine the Ideal Bat WeightTM for an individual player. This device has been successfully used by numerous players who have greatly increased their batting averages after correctly choosing an appropriate weight bat, as well as by several college teams who have gone on to win championships after finding their correct bat weights. His data shows definitively that players cannot swing heavy bats as quickly as they can lighter bats, and the details vary somewhat from player to player and vary more considerably depending on the technical playing ability of the individual.
 

Bat Swing Speed and Batted Ball Velocity

01-11-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »


A similar experiment (from the same 1980 high-school textbook Physics of Sports developed by Florida State University[6]) changed the bat swing speed while the the ball mass, pitch speed, and bat mass (30oz) were all kept constant. The data shows that a faster bat swing produces a faster batted ball speed. Doubling the swing speed of the bat results in an increase of almost 22mph. So, it would seem that swinging the same bat faster is more beneficial than swinging a heavier bat at a the same speed. Ideally, the best result would be to swing a heavier bat faster. But, as I already stated, it is harder to swing a heavier bat with the same speed, let alone swing a heavier bat faster.
 

Can Detroit keep its Big Three

01-07-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
In a city where the "Big Three" can mean different things to different people, Detroit has its eyes on a trio of elite starting pitchers. This project, inspired by the Atlanta Bravesof the 1990s, is two-thirds complete. ... But to get that third piece of the puzzle in place, American League Cy Young award winnerMax Scherzer, the Tigers will have to bridge a sea of dollar bills awaiting the righty after the 2014 season. And make no mistake, they will do whatever they can to extend Scherzer and further what the Braves cemented as the best model for long-term success. "They had a lot of changed pieces," Tigers general manager Dave Dombrowski said in November. "But they had (Greg) Maddux and (John) Smoltz and (Tom) Glavine and Chipper Jones."
 

Bat Weight and Batted Ball Velocity

01-07-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »


To see the effects of bat weight and bat speed, here is a summary of an experiment that I found summarized in a 1980 high-school textbook, Physics of Sports developed by Florida State University.[6] For this experiment, the ball mass, pitch speed, and bat swing speed were all kept constant. Only the bat mass was changed.
 

Collisions and the Conservation of Momentum

01-03-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
The impact between bat and ball is a collision between two objects, and in its simplest analysis the collision may be taken to occur in one-dimension. In reality most collisions between bat and ball (especially the ones I am able to make) are glancing collisions which require a two-dimensional analysis. It turns out, in fact, that a glancing blow is necessary to impart spin to the ball which allows it to travel farther.[5] Maybe I'll write about this more interesting, but more difficult problem later, but for right now I'll keep things simple and look at the collision in one-dimension only. The ball, m1, and bat, m2, both have initial velocities before the collision (subscript "b"), with the ball's velocity being negative. After the collision (subscript "a") both bat and ball have positive velocities. The before and after velocities and the masses of bat and ball may be related to each other through the physical relationship known as the conservation of linear momentum. Linear momentum is the product of the mass and velocity of an object, p=mv. If the net force acting on a system of objects is zero then the total momentum of the system is constant. While the bat and ball are in contact the player is exerting a force on the bat; the force needed to swing the bat. So, in a completely correct analysis, momentum is not constant because of this force exerted by the player swinging the bat. However, the force on the bat by the player is very much smaller than the forces between bat and ball during the collision, and the contact time between ball and bat is very short (less than 1 millisecond). This allows us to ignore the force on the bat by the player during the collision between ball and bat without significantly affecting our results. If we ignore the force by the player on the bat, we can express the conservation of linear momentum by setting the total momentum before the collision equal to the total momentum after the collision.
 

Do Professional Players use Heavy or Light Bats?

01-01-2014  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

The answer to that question is "both," though past players tend to have used heavier bats than do today's players. Baseball's "king of swat" Babe Ruth reportedly began his hitting career using a 54 ounce (1.5 kg) hickory bat, and is known to have used a 40oz bat in 1927 when he hit his 60 home runs.[1] Ty Cobb and Joe Di Maggio both played with 42oz bats and Rogers Hornsby used a 50oz piece of lumber. George Sisler, playing for the St. Louis Browns in the 1920's, made his bat heavier by hammering Victrola needles into the barrel of his bat.[2] In the 1950's Cincinnati Reds' Ted Kluszeski hammered tenpenny nails into his bat to make it heavier.

Other great hitters including Ted Williams, Rod Carew and Stan Musial used much lighter bats: 31-33oz.[1] Roger Maris used a 33oz bat to hit his 61 home runs in 1961. Many players have tried to make their bats lighter by drilling a hole in the barrel and filling it with cork. Detroit Tigers' Norm Cash admitted to using a corked bat in 1961 when he won the batting title with a .361 average (though he slumped to .243 the next year with the same corked bat).[2]

 

Bat Weight, Swing Speed and Ball Velocity

12-27-2013  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
A Little League player is looking for a new bat. Having decided on a certain length the player discovers that in addition to the choices of materials (wood, aluminum, or composite), and the various technologies (Vibration Reduction System, Nitrogen bladders, piezoelectric shock absorbers, double walled barrels, composite materials) there is also a wide selection of bat weights. Consider the following list of 30inch Little League bats which I currently have in the Acoustics Laboratory at Kettering University. Some of these bat models are older, and may be no longer be available, but the distribution of materials and weights are of interest.
 

Thin Handled Softball Bat

12-24-2013  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

Our softball bats come in 10 different models. Per ASA rules, all softball bats are identical from the transition through the 2 1/4" barrel. The differences are in the handle thicknesses and knob styles.

Our Model ASA 59 and Softball 59 both have thin 7/8" handles and would be good ones to consider.  The ASA Spec model has a straight handle all the way to the knob. The Softball 59 handle tapers to the knob.

 

New High School and College Bat Regulations

12-16-2013  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

With the new BBCOR aluminum and composite bats mandated for high school and professional play, players are finding that high quality professional grade wood bats are now outperforming the BBCOR bats.

BBCOR stands for "Batted Ball Coefficient of Restitution" and it focuses on how much of a trampoline effect the barrel of a bat has on a ball. Bat manufacturers now have to, in effect, "deaden" the trampoline bounce that pitched balls experience when a batter makes contact. Basically, aluminum bats will theoretically be the same as wooden bats.

Beginning in 2012, all High School baseball bats will follow in the same way, that is, they will all need at BBCOR stamp on each metal/aluminum/composite bat.

What a player now gets for his $400. is one choice of bat shape from EVERY different manufacturer, one handle style from EVERY different manufacturer, one handle thickness from EVERY different manufacturer, only three length choices and one weight choice. WOW! The monopoly is dead! Players now have a say in the equipment that suits their size, strength and game.

 

A Note about Wood Softball Bats

12-09-2013  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »


There have been lots of questions from players switching from aluminum to wood softball bats as to what weight to order. Most try to get a –5 since they think the bat speed is important. They are accustomed to swinging the lightest aluminum bat possible since weight and mass behind the ball does not matter with aluminum bat barrels which provide all the pop by virtue of the material used and the thin walls.
 

Baseball bat weight vs. swing weight

12-02-2013  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »


What many new players don't seem to grasp is the concept of bat weight vs. swing weight. If you take a 34 inch, 32 ounce thin handled, big barreled bat and hold it by the handle, it feels very heavy because the weight is all at the end of the bat where the wood is. If you pick the same bat up and hold it by the barrel, it suddenly feels very light. You didn't change the weight of the bat, you changed the balance. Aluminum bats feel light because the barrels are hollow and the weight is in the handle. To get the swing weight feel of an aluminum bat in a wood bat, the wood bat would need to be a -8.
 

Light Bat Weights v Light Bats

11-24-2013  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »


The reason we make some models in -2 rather than -3 (and the truth is that no maple bats should be made as light as -3 period) is that we understand after getting feedback on tens of thousands of bats what parameters a bat model needs to both perform and hold up. Maple is a heavy, dense wood and thus far, the best performing wood for bats. However, when bats are made with billets that are too light, they perform more like ash and break more readily than ash. Maple is a less flexible wood than ash so light maple does not have the performance advantage over ash and breaks easier than ash due to it's stiffness. This is why the maple backlash in MLB has come about. Too many bat makers  are making light bats they have no business making. We refuse those orders from players but other bat makers do not. We have over 300 MLB players for a reason. We know what will work for them and what won't. We won't compromise our brand and reputation to make something we know won't perform and hold up.
 

Picking the right X Bat Youth Bat

11-24-2013  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
We find the most important thing with young players switching from metal bats to wood is to find a bat that has great balance.

Here's a little exercise to help demonstrate the concept.

Pickup any adult wood bat and hold it out with one hand. It feels heavy because you can feel the weight at the end of the bat because the weight is concentrated in the barrel. 

Now hold it by the barrel end. It feels much lighter. You didn't change the weight, though, you just changed the balance.
 

Wood, wood, wood……

11-19-2013  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
After more than five years of testing many kinds of woods for baseball and softball bats, we are adding some additional categories from which our customers can choose. We are adding Yellow Birch, a wood that fits between maple and ash for performance, feel and longevity. We found a hickory wood that makes what we feel is a “superbat”, harder and stronger than maple with better performance and more resistance to breakage. This can really change the playing field for wood bat performance and is unique to X Bats. After testing bamboo bats for years with mixed results, we have created a bamboo bat that lives up to the promise of durability that many players seek. Lastly, we have developed a composite bat that performs better than the composite choices on the market and it has all of the durable qualities players seek in a composite wood bat without sacrificing all the performance.
 

Welcome to X Bats Bat Blog

11-14-2013  |  By: X Bats |  (0) Post comment »  |  Read comments »

We are pleased to have you follow our new X Bats Bat Blog, featuring the latest in news on wood baseball and softball bats, advancements in wood bat technology, news from the pros, advice on selecting the right wood bat and many other areas of interest to baseball and softball players of all ages.

X Bats has been making the finest professional quality wood baseball and softball bats for discerning players of all ages since 1999. As a leader in wood bat technology, we have made more maple bats than any other bat manufacturer in the 21st century. We have learned a lot about what performs and what doesn’t, what holds up to use and what doesn’t, what wood and model is best for each players’ age, size, style and level of play. We have players in the pros that began playing with X Bats’ wood bats as youth players. We have outfitted major collegiate softball programs with the training tools to help them be successful. We have thousands of softball players at all ages and levels who enjoy success from the custom fit the choices in models, sizes and weights give them. We make bats that fit every player to enhance their performance on the field and provide value for the investment they are making in their equipment. Remember, the bat is the single piece of equipment in all of sports that has the greatest impact on a player’ performance.

Company Headlines

X Bats has just launched a new website with a revolutionary bat configurator to assist players in customizing their X Bats. Check it out at http://www.xbats.com/xbat-configurator/

X Bats is using the off season to test new woods and new sourcing of existing woods to increase performance and durability.

X Bats is the leading producer or youth bats with nine different models so each player can find the fit that helps his game advance to the next level. We have just introduced a line of Super Light Youth Maple baseball bats with weights as light as -8. Now every player can find a wood bat that accommodates their size and strength and level of play.

Coming Soon

X Bats has fielded so many questions ranging from parents of young players to pros on what bat is right for them. We will use our blog to answer questions on a wide range of topics related to wood species, logging and log harvesting, bat billet production, the bat production process, bat swing weights and why players choose the bats they feel help them play their best.

 

DO NOT CALL THE ORDER LINE FOR CUSTOMER SERVICE.

09-21-2012  |  By: XBATS |  (1) Post comment »  |  Read comments »
Your call will not be returned and your question will not be answered. That line is for placing new orders only. Please email us: CustomerService@XBats.com for any and all Customer Service issues. This is how we can help you most quickly and effectively.

All orders are tracked by the name the order is being shipped to. Please tell us the first and last name your order is being shipped to in every e-mail so we can best help address your issue. Every email is answered every single day. If you do not receive a reply in 24 hours it means your email did not get to us. Please use the email address you entered when you placed your order to contact us. Please sign your email so we know who you are. We track orders by the name the bat is to be shipped to so please use that name in your email.