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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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Can kids use a wood bat in youth leagues?

The question is, can kids use a wood bat in youth leagues, where metal bats are the norm?  Well, of course they can. A wood bat can be used in any kind of league or tournament play.

Some coaches will tell you that there is a disadvantage to swinging a wood bat in a game where most other kids are swinging metal bats. Is that the reason why some coaches frown on kids swinging wood bats, or is it because they don’t know the rules?

The answer could be both, but all you really need to know is that ALL wood bats are legal to use in baseball games, no matter the level.

We’ve heard parents say that their kid “has to swing a -10 this year”. What this means is, their METAL bat can’t be any lighter than a -10 weight drop. This DOESN’T mean that they cannot use a wood bat in their games. It also doesn’t mean that if they use a wood bat, that it has to be -10. They can swing a -5 metal bat if they want to, or a -7 wood bat.  Just remember that the lighter the wood bat, the weaker the wood.  It’s actually advantageous for some kids to swing a wood bat as opposed to a metal bat.  Why?  Because some of the metal bats are sooooo light, that the bat actually stops when making contact with the ball.  Because a wood bat has a solid barrel and more mass, contact with the ball does not impede the swing of a wood bat as much as it does with a metal bat.

Sometimes the rules completely omit the mention of wood bats in their list, but it’s necessary for everyone in baseball leagues across the country to know and understand that a wood bat is legal to use in all levels of baseball. Weight doesn’t even factor into the equation. If it’s wood, it’s good.

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

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