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CheapBats.com has the best selection of Baseball Bats from Adult baseball bats to Youth league baseball bats. We carry the widest selection of bats from companies like Easton, Louisville Slugger, DeMarini, Rip It, Marucci, Combat, and Rawlings. We know you want your baseball bat as fast as possible, so we offer Free 2nd Day Air on most high end bats. High School and College players must use certified BBCOR bats with a minus 3 length-to-weight ratio and a 2 5/8" diameter barrel. Built using high-end composite and aluminum alloy, Youth Big Barrel bats are designed with the elite travel baseball player in mind, and have the USSSA 1.15 BPF stamp. Wood Baseball Bats are most commonly made from Ash or Maple for their durability, and have remained virtually unchanged for the past 100 years. If you need help choosing a new bat, please call us and we would be happy to assist in finding the best baseball bat for you, or check out some our customers' bat reviews.
The Evolution of Baseball Bats
Rounders, Caddy, Flyball and of course, Town ball - Town ball being one of the oldest games from which the current "national game" of baseball is thought to have been evolved as early as the late 18th century. The ball was hit by a four-inch flat bat with a tapered handle that could be firmly gripped for control and leverage. By the mid-1800’s numerous changes in all aspects of the game had been made and the players were each responsible for selecting baseball bats for themselves. One of the first documented accounts of a baseball game played in June of 1846 in Hoboken, New Jersey included 9 innings, 9 players on each team, and 3 outs per side. However, because players made their own bats, many different styles and sizes of bats were used. Right around this time wagon tongue wood was predominately used, and players were realizing that a round bat hit a ball much more solidly. The first bat limitation was not voted on until 1859 when bat size was determined to be no larger than 2 ½ inches in diameter. From there the bat length rule was adopted in 1869 (no more than 42 inches) and over the next century and a half the baseball bat has been reshaped, reconstructed, restricted and re-certified [Bat Standards -- BBCOR references: NCAA, ASTM].
What are the differences between a softball bat and a baseball bat? Why shouldn’t you use a softball bat to play baseball, or a baseball bat to play softball?
The most obvious difference between youth bats, softball bats, and baseball bats is the bat's length. The same make and model bat as used for adult baseball, adult slow-pitch softball, and youth baseball/softball will vary in length (baseball - 33", softball - 34", youth - 30”). The next significant difference is the bat weight.
The primary reason for the range of available weights is that the speed with which a player can swing a bat is somewhat related to weight. However, not all bats that weigh the same swing the same. This has to do with something called the moment-of-inertia, which is the physics of a bat swing, taking into account the center-of-mass and the rotation of the bat which together strongly determine the bat swing speed.
Bat profiles, or barrel diameters differ between baseball, softball and youth bats. The barrels of baseball bats are fatter than those of softball bats. Adult softball bats (both slow- and fast-pitch) are narrower, with diameters of only 2-1/4". Youth bats have the same diameter as adult slow-pitch bats.
Understanding the differences between baseball bats, deciding on the right kind of bat and buying the right bat for yourself or your child might seem a daunting task if you are very new to this game. At the youth level there is no difference in bats for softball and baseball.
However, at the adult level, baseball and softball bats are designed to match their respective games. You could use a baseball bat to play softball, as long as you adjusted to the slightly shorter total length, and the heavier weight. The performance would be about the same as using an older lower performance softball bat.
Using a softball bat to play baseball would most likely result in cracking or breaking your bat. Softball bats are not designed to withstand the forces resulting from an impact with a baseball.
The same would be true of using a fast-pitch softball bat in a slow-pitch game; the performance might be really good and the ball might come off the bat pretty fast, but you would most likely damage your fast-pitch bat.
You could use a slow-pitch bat in a fast-pitch softball game without damaging it but the larger weight (actually, larger moment-of-inertia) makes the slow-pitch bat more difficult to swing quickly and you would probably not hit as well.
There are so many different bats on the market – which piece of baseball equipment will be best for you and your baseball games? Which one might be a dud? Is this one right for your league? What makes that one worth the price?
You surely don’t want to make a poor decision and waste your money on a bat that doesn’t serve your purpose. That is exactly why you should purchase your baseball bats and gear from real humans who love the game as much as you do.
2014 Easton B4.0 Slowpitch Softball Bat ASA Balanced SP14B4