Unique set of bats tailored to the youth baseball player
10-02-2017 / By:
X Bats has introduced a unique set of bats tailored to the youth baseball player moving from -12 and -10 bats to -5. That weight difference can severely alter the original swing developed over the previous years and many youth players find this to be a difficult transition.
Each bat carries with it certain characteristics that cater to the individual hitter. This is important for you to know as you pick the bat that is going to work best with you and for you.
Let’s start with the weight distribution of a bat. Maybe you know whether a bat is end-loaded or balanced throughout, but you don’t really know what that means. Simply put, the more weight found in the barrel creates more inertia at the point of contact. This gives the opportunity for harder contact if hit on the barrel during the swing. Furthermore, the barrel is able to drop at a faster rate to generate more bat speed through the swing. Is this true for everyone? No, but we need to consider the majorities here. The only way you’ll know what weight distribution works best for you is to try them out and feel.
Another characteristic that changes between these youth bats is the size of the handle. The thicker the handle, the more control a hitter has to manipulate the barrel during the swing. More area for the hands produces more control for the hands. However, since no two people are the same, some may prefer a smaller handle because it feels easier to swing than a very thick handle. Generally, a smaller handle allows more whip to occur through the swing and create a high bat speed. But what you gain in speed, you may lose in control. Therefore, it is recommended to swing your wood before you buy to ensure that the model fits your swing and not the other way around.
The knob is another area that needs some more explanation. There are many different knobs available for bats, and this is for good reason. Some players use the knob as an extension of the bat and actually wrap the last two fingers around them. Some use flared knobs and some use no knob at all to reduce the risk of a hamate injury. Many players like to feel the bottom hand secure at the base of the handle, that’s why a flared knob is desired. The bottom of the handle expands as it approaches the knob to give the base of the bottom hand a comfortable finish.
The whole point of a baseball bat, and swinging a baseball bat for that matter, is to hit the ball. And where do you want to hit the ball? On the barrel - right on the sweet spot. That’s the whole point! So it’s important to understand what kind of barrel deliver the power you want. In leagues with metal bats, the barrel is always the largest it can possibly be. Totally understandable; you want the most possible area to do the most damage when hitting a ball. But with wood bats, different barrel sizes and widths need to be considered. For example, a smaller barrel is going to carry more density than a larger one. So, all things constant, a ball hit in the sweet spot of a smaller barrel will go further than one hit on a larger barrel. Isn’t it crazy how science works? But it comes down to whether or not you’re willing to sacrifice more surface area for harder contact. Are you a hitter looking for more barrel to give a little more forgiveness, or do you trust your hand-eye coordination and want harder contact? The length of the barrel is important as well for very similar reasons. A longer barrel gives more area to hit the ball, but leaks a little ‘pop’ in its place. So, no matter what you finally decide, there are many positives to either a larger barrel or a smaller one.