Choosing a bat is one of the more important choices a hitter makes before stepping into the batter’s box. An inch either way or an ounce too heavy can throw off a hitter’s rhythm and sense of timing. We have put together a guide to help you select a baseball bat that will suit your playing needs.
It is important to know your league’s rules. Do you use wood or metal? How big can the barrel of the bat be? Is there a certain ratio between a bat’s weight and its length that must be followed? It is important to check with your coach before purchasing a bat.
Set your budget. Adult bats can range anywhere from $99 to $199 and junior bats start from $39. Technology has allowed manufacturers to turn baseball bats into lightweight trampolines. The micro thin walls of today’s upper end bats produce a trampoline like effect while allowing the hitter to produce more power and speed. The downside of this however is that bats may experience dents in the future.
Pick up and feel the bat in store. There is no scientific method to measure what the right size baseball bat is. There is no spot on your hip where the bat should come up to. It’s a feel more than anything. With practice, you will find out which size is right for you. It is fine to go a little bit longer than what you are normally used to, but as previously said you will determine which size is right for you after playing and practicing with your bat.
Consider the weight. A bat should be light. Bat speed generates power. You must also consider the length as it is equally important. Often young players opt for a long bat because they feel they can’t ‘reach the outside part of the plate’. However a big bat often makes it hard to hit a baseball. You must be comfortable and in control when you enter the batter’s box.
Grip the bottom part of the handle with just one hand. Using your fingers, hold the bat directly in front of you and lift the bat 6-8 times using only your wrist. If you have to bend your arm or elbow in order to lift the bat then it would be in your best interest to select a lighter bat.
Practice. Remember, selecting a bat that fits you is an important step, but practicing with your bat will lead to success on the field.