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Baseball bat for high school


Trigger Mike
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My 16 year old son keeps telling he he wants to finally play baseball in his junior year.   When he was young he went to baseball camp for two summers buy never did great and never got interested in it.  

 

Now he wants to join the school team and tells me the other players have $500 bats.  That he won't be able to play good without a $500 bat.

 

The local Hibbet sports store has a Louisville slugger bat for 300.  What makes the 500 bat worth it?

 

https://www.hibbett.com/louisville-slugger-solo-bbcor-baseball-bat-2021-(-3)/9937B.html?dwvar_9937B_color=0171&cgid=baseball-bats#start=1&sz=24

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1 minute ago, Larsen E. Pettifogger, SASS #32933 said:

Louisville slugger for $300.00!  What the heck does a glove cost these days?

Cheaper at Walmart but at Hibbet, over 300.  I have one I bought from Walmart a few years ago to play catch with the kids and it was well under 100.  

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Al Capone didn't have an aluminum bat, he had a wood one, see where it got him?

 

Babe Ruth didn't have an aluminum bat, he used a wood one, see where it got him? 

 

Hank Aaron didn't have an aluminum bat, he used a wood one, see where it got him?

 

Chances are that unless your son is great at baseball or has a good chance at being a gangster...a cheap bat versus an expensive bat isn't going to make much of a difference.

 

 

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Baseball is all my adult son thinks about, talks about...at age 47 he is still playing in an adult league.

 

He recommends checking out this place:

 

https://www.closeoutbats.com/?utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=CPCS - Cheap%2FDiscount Bats&utm_term=cheapbats com&utm_content=Cheap Bats

 

Good luck!

 

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Hatfield played high school baseball a little over 20 years ago.  He played first and third base and pitched. That required him to have two gloves.  Since he also played on a traveling team when not involved in school sports, (he was also tight end on the football team) we bought top quality gear for him.  In 1998, his first base glove/mitt was over $200.00 before discounts, (I was president of the local youth baseball/softball association and did much of the purchasing) and his regular infield glove was well over $100.00!

 

He had a Easton regulation aluminum bat that cost around $65.00, IMSC.  The teams he played on also furnished bats that were comparable in price.

 

 I’m certain that prices have increased drastically in the interim.

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Sounds like status symbol BS to me. 
 

If you hand Jerry Miculek a $500 gun and hand me the same $500 gun I am sure he will kick my butt in scoring. 
 

If my kid wanted a $500 bat he would get the cheap bat until he proved he was qualified for the $500 bat. 
 

my 2 cents

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16 minutes ago, J-BAR #18287 said:

Baseball is all my adult son thinks about, talks about...at age 47 he is still playing in an adult league.

 

He recommends checking out this place:

 

https://www.closeoutbats.com/?utm_source=bing&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=CPCS - Cheap%2FDiscount Bats&utm_term=cheapbats com&utm_content=Cheap Bats

 

Good luck!

 

Good sight.  Thx.  Can he relay what the extra cost does to help hitting?  

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Just now, Crazy Gun Barney, SASS #2428 said:

BTW, nothing quite as annoying as the TINK of an aluminum bat hitting a ball!  Give the boys a wood bat and let em play!

Have to agree with you there.  Wood just sounds a lot better,  but sadly not what kids want these days. 

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That's a pretty tall order to not have been regularly playing organized baseball growing up and then deciding as a junior you want to make the varsity team. Maybe, if it's a very small school with not enough players but otherwise pretty tough to do.

Edited by Smokin Gator SASS #29736
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Another thing to keep in mind!! There may be standards on bat selection!! Be sure that whatever you buy meets the standards and regulations for the league and team!

 

 I have seen and have had to disqualify perfectly good bats just because the certification on the bat was wrong for the organization that sanctioned the competition!!

 

You buy the wrong bat, you probably won’t be able to return it!

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43 minutes ago, Abilene Slim SASS 81783 said:

I wasn't aware players had a choice of wood or aluminum. I thought the league they're playing in determined what they're made of?


In some cases, that is the way it is.  In one sanctioning body I worked with, ANY wood bat that was marked for baseball and two brands of aluminum bat with the organization’s stamp of approval, plus another’s composite bat were all legal!  Other aluminum and composite bats by the same manufacturers were prohibited.

 

Another brand was excluded entirely.

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3 hours ago, Charlie Harley, #14153 said:

Maybe Cyrus Cassidy can toss in two cents of wisdom. He’s been around the youth game a long time. 

 

Yep.  Unfortunately, the OP's kid is correct.  There is a HUGE difference between expensive bats and cheap ones, and he is going to sit the bench with a cheap bat.  A few things to keep in mind:

 

- I assume your son's high school association uses the National Federation of High Schools (NFHS) rule book.  All but a few around the country are using that rule book.  If so, the bat may not be lower than -3 ("drop three").  It will say on the side of the bat what its drop rating is.  You definitely want to max it out at -3.  A lower number, like -4 or -5 is illegal in high school.  Some Little League bats are -15 but he'll be called out if he takes a pitch with a bat lower than -3 in high school.

 

- The maximum barrel diameter under the NFHS rule book is 2 5/8" for aluminum and composite bats.  If he is using wood, it can go to 2 3/4", but I DO NOT recommend using wood.  Again, your kid is right; modern bat design means these kids have much better bat speed and control than they would with a wooden bat.  So do not put him at a disadvantage.

 

- NFHS also requires the bat to be stamped "BBCOR."  Check your local rules; they may allow a different one. 

 

- NFHS does not allow bats greater than 36 inches in length, although if your kid can swing a bat that big, he should be the entire offensive line on the football team.  Bigger is NOT better; it needs to fit the batter.

 

- You do not have to buy aluminum.  Someone above presented the "wooden or aluminum" choice, but NFHS allows for composite and two-piece bats, as well.  They must meet all the criteria above.  Composite tends to be more expensive than aluminum, but it also tends to hit better. 

 

- I'm quoting the national rule book, but check with your son's coach for any local supplemental rules or modifications. 

 

- Each bat swings differently, even two bats of the exact same model, just like two guns of the same model feel differently to those of us who shoot enough.  That means internet ordering is not going to cut it.  Go to a sporting goods store and have him swing each bat that he is interested in and is in your price range.  They are balanced differently -- some with more weight to the hitting end, some more centered, and others with more weight to the handle end.  Each person is different; do not assume that favoring the hitting end means more home runs.  My son did that, and he can't hit the ball for jack with that bat.  It's all about bat speed, control, and personal preference. 

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5 hours ago, Crazy Gun Barney, SASS #2428 said:

Unless you are a star headed for the MLB hall of fame, I doubt a high schooler can tell the difference between a $500 bat and a $100 bat, except for the fancy label.

 

Sorry, pard, see my post above.  Bat design has put those of moderate means behind the hitting game.  There is a HUGE difference in bat performance, and price tends to mirror performance.  Trust me, I hate this too (I wish they would adopt a "wooden only" rule!), because I have a high school player and have to buy his gear!

 

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Might be a good time to have him pick up a part time job to split the cost of the bat.

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21 minutes ago, DeaconKC said:

Might be a good time to have him pick up a part time job to split the cost of the bat.


My son paid for a lot of his gear himself.  He did odd jobs and helped his grandfather on their place for equipment and car/gas money.

 

A great way for a kid to learn life lessons and the value of a dollar!

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2 hours ago, Cyrus Cassidy #45437 said:

Sorry, pard, see my post above

So glad a grew up in a time when skill was skill and how rich your parents were or weren’t didn’t affect a kids chances of playing high school sports. 
just one more signpost on the road saying we will never be as good as we were, as a nation. 

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2 hours ago, DeaconKC said:

Might be a good time to have him pick up a part time job to split the cost of the bat.

yep.  he is a bag boy at one of the local grocery stores.  the only one in his class that has a job.  my daughter is the only one in her senior class with a job.  

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4 minutes ago, Trigger Mike said:

yep.  he is a bag boy at one of the local grocery stores.  the only one in his class that has a job.  my daughter is the only one in her senior class with a job.  

Good for them both! Well done Dad!

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I understand that there's a big difference between the cheap bats and top of the line models. But if the best are $500 I would think there's some pretty darn good bats for maybe between $300 to $400 that are pretty close to the top level.  Especially for an inexperienced kid trying to play ball in high school.

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Is there a "used" sports equipment store in the area? For me its like buying a Shiloh Sharps with all the goodies for $4,000. Or a Pedersoli sharps for $1,800. They both have good barrels and will hit the target. The difference is in the shooter. New shooter vs. someone who's been loading and shooting for 8 years. Buy a used rifle.

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19 hours ago, Crazy Gun Barney, SASS #2428 said:

So glad a grew up in a time when skill was skill and how rich your parents were or weren’t didn’t affect a kids chances of playing high school sports. 
just one more signpost on the road saying we will never be as good as we were, as a nation. 

Agreed.  If they passed a "wooden bats only" rule, it would level the playing field again.

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3 hours ago, Smokin Gator SASS #29736 said:

I understand that there's a big difference between the cheap bats and top of the line models. But if the best are $500 I would think there's some pretty darn good bats for maybe between $300 to $400 that are pretty close to the top level.  Especially for an inexperienced kid trying to play ball in high school.

That may very well be reasonable for a kid who is not in the running for a college scholarship but doesn't want to sit the bench.

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