This is a guide for parents so they can better educate themselves on what kind of wood bat to get for their child. I get asked all of the below questions frequently, and hopefully this guide will help improve the knowledge base and wood bat buying process of parents everywhere.
- How long does it take to get a bat?
The biggest thing I can tell parents is to plan ahead when it comes to getting a bat. If you know of a tournament coming up, or if a child needs a bat for a league, try to purchase at least a month or so in advance so you don’t have to pay extra for express production and/or shipping fees. One thing to keep in mind when buying a wood bat is that it’s typically not an in-stock purchase like a metal bat. Typical turnaround time is 1-4 weeks depending on the time of year. During busy season (spring) expect it to be closer to the 4 week mark.
- What bat is the best for my kid?
There isn’t going to be one bat that is “the best” or give them “more pop”. The biggest thing to know is that birch, maple, and bamboo bats are going to be more forgiving and last longer on average than an ash bat. With that said, most kids are used to swinging a very light metal bat so the closest alternative to that is the Birch Ultra Light’s or Ash Ultra Light’s.
- What’s the difference between a Little League and Youth bat?
This is a fairly important thing to know when it comes to buying a bat. Little League bats can have a maximum 2.25” diameter barrel so anything bigger than that is not legal to use. Youth bats are going to have a slightly larger barrel (~2.35”) and are usable in leagues that aren’t specifically “little league”. The best way to find out which type is right for you is to ask your coach if it’s a “little league” tournament/league or if they can have a bigger barrel and go from there.
Our little league bats all say LL on them and can be found here: http://www.viperbats.com/littleleaguewoodbats.asp
Our youth bats can be found here:
- What’s the difference between the LL271 and LL10?
The knob is the only thing that’s different on these two models. The LL271 is going to have a slightly flared knob while the LL10 is going to have a standard/conventional knob. Typically the LL10 is a little closer to a metal bat profile.
- What’s the difference between the Y73 and Y271?
The knob on the 73 is going to be a large bell shaped knob that is going to work as a counterweight while the 271 is going to be a flared knob which is more common in wood bats. Typically, if a player has never swung a Y73 I suggest they go with the Y271 because it’s going to be similar to what they’ve swung in metal bats. The Y73 is a very popular model and a lot of people like it; I just don’t recommend it for someone who isn’t sure if they’re sold on the knob style.