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Wood Bat Barrels vs Aluminum Bat Barrels

WOOD BAT BARRELS VS. ALUMINUM BAT BARRELS

We want to shed some light on a common debate…”Wood bat barrels vs. aluminum bat barrels.” Please keep in mind that wood bat barrels and aluminum bat barrels are completely different animals. Because aluminum bats have a hollow barrel, those barrels can be designed larger.  Aluminum bats have hollow barrels. So that typically makes them swing lighter than a wood bat barrel.  And because the aluminum barrel compresses when making contact with the baseball, a trampoline effect helps propel the baseball. Wood bat barrels on the other hand have a solid barrel, and the baseball will compress (instead of the barrel) when making solid barrel contact. Because there is no trampoline effect from wood bats, we need to think of ways to help give the player more lift and carry when hitting a baseball. The way to do that is to put more backspin on the ball, and you don’t need to be a seasoned professional in order to do this.

Big Barrel vs. Small Barrel

This brings us back to the “big barrel vs. small barrel” argument and the “wood bat barrels vs. aluminum bat barrels”. Which is better? Well, because the diameter of the smaller barrel has greater curvatures than the bigger barrel, you’re able to put more backspin on a baseball with your natural swing. This gives the ball more lift and carry, which translates to more distance.  The smaller wood bat barrel also forces the player to be a more disciplined hitter.  If you swing at bad pitches you will sting your hands or break your bat when swinging wood.  By nature you will have better plate discipline and and strike zone awareness.  Whereas hitting a ball squarely with a large barreled bat can often result in the baseball “knuckling” off the barrel, limiting its’ distance.  Every level of professional baseball is played with a wood bat.  So if you’re serious about baseball, swing wood!  Check out MaxBat pro series wood bats:  https://www.maxbats.com/shop/bats/baseball/?pro-series

 

Ball compression on a wood bat barrel

Ball compression on a wood bat barrel

Categories: Baseball Bats, Maple Bats, Metal bats, Wood Baseball Bats, Wood Bat

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Wood bats and pre-season training

Simply swinging a wood bat can really help hitters develop faster. First off, wooden bats tend to be weighted differently than aluminum / metal bats.  This doesn’t always mean that a wood bat is heavier, it means that because the barrel of wood bat is solid (instead of hollow like an aluminum bat), the weight distribution is going to be/feel different. This difference alone helps hitters develop the muscles they use to swing, and really builds bat speed faster than just working with aluminum.  Professional coaches often say that players MUST utilize their legs and hips to effectively hit with a wood bat, thus training with a wood bat will help teach leg drive.  Also, the sweet spot on wooden bats is smaller than that of a metal bat, and forces hitters to be more selective at the plate. Because wood bats have smaller sweet spots, it forces hitters to only swing at good pitches.

Typically hitters who train with wood bats swing at fewer bad pitches, and wait for that pitch they can drive on a more consistent basis. Being more selective at the plate and having more bat speed are two things that coaches at all levels look for when they evaluate hitters. Simply switching to wooden bats for practice will help hitters develop the skills necessary to play and be more successful at the next level. With the school season approaching, and tryouts on the horizon, do yourself a favor and start swinging a wood bat. You’ll see improvement in your production at the plate in no time.

Categories: Metal bats, Wood Baseball Bats, Wood Bat, Wood Bats

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Advantages of training with wood bats

Swinging a wood bat can really help young hitters develop faster. First off, wooden bats tend to be weighted differently than aluminum / metal bats. This difference alone helps hitters develop the muscles they use to swing, and really builds bat speed faster than just working with aluminum. Also, the sweet spot on wooden bats is smaller than that of a metal bat, and forces hitters to be more selective at the plate. Because wood bats have smaller sweet spots, it forces hitters to only swing at good pitches.

Typically hitters who train with wood bats swing at fewer bad pitches, and wait for that pitch they can drive on a more consistent basis. Being more selective at the plate and having more bat speed are two things that coaches at all levels look for when they evaluate hitters. Simply switching to wooden bats for practice will help hitters develop the skills necessary to play and be more successful at the next level. With the school season ending, and the travel ball season starting to ramp up,  do yourself a favor and start swinging a wood bat.  You’ll see improvement in your production at the plate in no time.

Categories: Metal bats, Wood Bat, Wood Bats

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Wood bats…..Wood Softball bats that is – Part 2

The wood bat movement for softball is something that really caught my eye. I have played slow pitch softball for a few summers now and have always thought that the metal bats used today are way too “hot”. I agree that having to have a home run limit is something that should immediately be a red flag. Not to mention, everyone now apologizes if they hit a ball up the middle.

In baseball, we are taught to drive the ball up the middle. As a baseball player myself (currently in a wood bat league), and a huge numbers and analytics nerd, I decided to do some research on the numbers.

A study was done out of Mamaroneck High School comparing metal bats and wood bats and swing and exit speed. The average swing speed was 8 miles per hour faster with the metal bats. The exit speed difference for someone of my age (22) was 14 mph faster off of the metal bat as compared to the wood bat.

If you take these numbers and put them into game like reaction times, you would find that with a wood bat, you have 0.04 more seconds to react on a ball hit back at the pitcher. Now this may not seem like a lot of time, but that can be the difference between getting your glove up to catch the ball and being hit by a hard line drive. As a pitcher who has been hit by a line drive back at me, I will take all the time I can get. In terms of softball, the base paths are 20-30 feet shorter than baseball, depending on the league. This reaction time is now reduced even more, which has caused pitchers and even some infielders to wear masks. At the end of the day, I am completely on board with the change to wood bats for softball. Not to mention the customization that MaxBat offers is something that softball players everywhere would enjoy.

Written by MaxBat contributor, Tyler Flakne

Categories: Bat Swing Speed, Metal bats, Wood Bat, Wood Bats

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What is the proper way to hold a wood bat?

We are frequently asked by customers “how should I hold a wood bat”?  It’s actually a good question, because with the variety of wood species to make wood bats, there’s a difference of opinion depending on what kind of wood bat you’re swinging.

Let’s start with how to hold the wood bat, and then we’ll get into the specifics.

First, hold your wood bat upright so the manufacturer’s logo (in this case, a MaxBat logo) is centered.  Which means you’re looking right at it.  Now, if you are a right-handed batter, slightly turn the wood bat in your hand so the MaxBat logo is facing your left shoulder.  If you are a left-handed batter, you would do just the opposite (slightly turn the wood bat in your hand so the MaxBat logo is facing your right shoulder.

But, why do we need to do this with wood bats, and not with aluminum?  Because wood bats have different flexes, and one side is harder than the other, etc., etc.  So, we want you to hold your wood bat in your hand, so that when you swing it, the hardest side of the wood bat barrel is making contact with the baseball.  By positioning the MaxBat logo to face your left shoulder (Right-Handed batter), or your right shoulder (Left-Handed batter), the MaxBat logo should be facing straight up to the sky when the wood bat barrel makes contact with the baseball.

So, what’s the big advantage to that?  We place the logo on either the Face-Grain (Ash Wood Bats), or Edge-Grain (Maple Wood Bats and Birch Wood Bats) so that when you position the wood bat in your hand correctly, you will be hitting the ball on the hardest side of the wood bat barrel.  Hitting the ball on this side of the wood bat barrel has been proven to extend the longevity of your wood bat.

Prior to 2009, it was believed that the manufacturer’s logo should always be placed on the face-grain of wood bats.  However, after extensive testing that was mandated by MLB, it was established that the manufacturer’s logo should be placed on the edge-grain of Maple wood bats and Birch wood bats.

So there you have it.  Just another tidbit on wood bats, from your friends at MaxBat.  Makers of the finest wood bats on the planet.

Categories: Baseball Bats, Birch Bats, Maple Bats, Metal bats, Wood Baseball Bats, Wood Bat, Wood Bats

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