Baseball Bat Considerations



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Bat restrictions vary by baseball organization and can be very confusing. West Windsor Babe Ruth has developed this paper in partnership with local umpire officials to help clarify the bat restrictions.
Bat restrictions by organization include:
Babe Ruth: 13 Baseball Division

  • Any non-wood bat may not exceed 34” in length and the barrel may not exceed 2 5/8” in diameter

  • All aluminum/alloy barrel bats and all composite handle (only) aluminum/alloy barrels are allowed (NO BBCOR requirement)

  • Only composite barrel bats certified and marked BBCOR .50 will be allowed

  • No composite barrel BPF bats will be allowed (metal BPF bats are allowed)

  • Wood barrel bats conforming to the specifications of Official Baseball Rule 1.10 are allowed (42” in length, 2.61” in diameter at thickest part)


Babe Ruth: 14-15 Baseball Division

  • Any non-wood bat may not exceed 34” in length and the barrel may not exceed 2 5/8” in diameter

  • All aluminum/alloy barrel bats and all composite handle (only) aluminum/alloy barrels are allowed (NO BBCOR requirement)

  • Only composite barrel bats certified and marked BBCOR .50 will be allowed

  • Wood barrel bats conforming to the specifications of Official Baseball Rule 1.10 are allowed (42” in length, 2.61” in diameter at thickest part)


Babe Ruth: 16-18 Baseball Division

  • The bat may not exceed 34” in length and the bat barrel many not exceed 2 5/8” in diameter or be greater than a -3 length to weight ratio – (There are bats which are BBCOR, and have a drop weight greater than -5. These have not been approved for Babe Ruth at this time.)

  • Only metal and composite bats certified and marked BBCOR .50 are allowed

  • Wood barrel bats conforming to the specifications of Official Baseball Rule 1.10 are allowed (42” in length, 2.61” in diameter at thickest part)


WWP Middle Schools

  • No Bat restrictions


WWP High Schools (Coaches are required to certify the legality of equipment prior to each game)

  • Non-Wood Bats must be marked with BBCOR .50 stamp

  • Currently two bats are BBCOR and NOT approved:

    • Marucci CAT5 33” model – the 32” and 31” models are approved

    • Nike Bat Model #Aero CX2-BTO636 (light grey), CX2-BTO573 (dark grey) and CX2-BTO598 (blue)

  • See the Babe Ruth website for updates to this list, http://www.baberuthleague.org/

As a general rule, all codes of play in baseball (e.g., NFHS, Babe Ruth, Little League, etc.) require a bat to be smooth, round, free of dents or cracks, and loose bodies in the bat. These bats are considered damaged and should be removed from the game. Bats that are altered (e.g., bat shaving or bat rolling) are considered illegal and unsportsmanlike – and may result in an ejection if used. Bats today do “flatten” out over time through repetitive use. Once a bat develops a flat spot, it becomes “hot” and can generally make the ball fly farther and leaves the barrel (point of impact) with greater velocity. While that may help your child appear to hit the ball farther, it also increases the chance for injury to defensive players. BBCOR standards, BPF standards and checking the integrity of bats is done to ensure that the game is played fairly. Check your child’s bat, use a bat ring to make sure it is cylindrically symmetric, and make sure the equipment is properly maintained. When a bat starts to flatten out (again, this should happen over time), it’s time to get a new bat.


If you need to buy a new bat, consider these guidelines…


  • Playing middle school ball and Babe Ruth - buy according to Babe Ruth rules

  • Playing high school ball and Babe Ruth - buy according to high school rules

 

Why?


The regulations governing bat use by these organizations can change frequently. Use this document as a guide but keep in mind that changes may occur. By publishing this document, neither WW Babe Ruth nor the umpire officials endorse or recommend any particular products. Nor should either of these organizations be considered responsible for bat purchase recommendations. It is recommended that individuals seek additional guidance from their school team coaches and the Babe Ruth rule book.



Drafted: March 18, 2012


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