According to Major League Baseball, 2,232 baseball bats were broken by batters from July to the end of the regular season. 756 of these bats broke into multiple pieces. An MLB research team was introduced after several high profile accidents seriously injured spectators, a base coach, and, finally, a plate umpire. Additionally, a number of close calls were reported including one having a team president and one with Bobby Cox, manager with the Atlanta Braves. They found that maple bats were three times as likely to shatter into multiple pieces than more traditional ash bats.
The researchers’ recommendations were shown to MLB in December. While you can find very likely numerous reasons behind the dramatic ruptures fans witness with maple, researchers are presently focusing on the structure of wood grain for maple bats. Most notably, maple grains need to be as straight as you can. Unlike ash, straight grains for maple are not as easy to locate. No matter the form of wood, researchers feel bats are more inclined to fail if the so-called “slope of grain” is more than one inch more than a 20-inch length of the bat (just below 3-degrees). In addition, the face area of the bat that strikes the ball must be reconfigured by moving the trademark a quarter of a turn for maple.
It’s been about nearly 9 years since Barry Bonds broke the only season home run record when using a Maple Baseball Bat throughout the season. That magical season in baseball was the showcase year for Maple Bats. Although players like Joe Carter used Maple even dating back to within the late 1980’s, maple never really took off up until the 2001 season when Bonds crushed 73 home runs to get rid of the only season homerun record in baseball. From that point on, maple surged into increasingly more hands in baseball…and maple hasn’t looked back ever since.
Several things inside our society come to be fads, and not survive the trying times. Maple baseball bats are starting to silence the critics that have been loud advocates against maple. There has been multiple instances where maple has become the culprit of major injuries in baseball. A prime example was throughout the 2008 season when Pittsburgh Pirates hitting coach Don Long was hit inside the face just below your eye area with a huge chunk of Nate McLouth’s maple bat throughout the eighth inning of the game at Dodgers Stadium. Witnesses claim that chunk appeared to be about half from the bat. Just 10 days later, another maple bat chunk flew from the hands in the Colorado Rockies Todd Helton and flew into the stands and broke the jaw of a Dodgers fan.
A lot of players concerned about the security of their teammates, coaches and fans have even switched from Maple to Ash or Birch. Such as a few seasons back, when Frank Thomas and Eric Chavez switched from Maple to Birch, and Jason Bay switched returning to Ash from Birch.
A 2005 study commissioned through the MLB discovered that there was no difference in how fast the ball comes off a maple or ash bat. Yet still maple generally seems to give hitters a confidence that ash will not. Even though the exact number of players who swing maple in the MLB is unknown, it really is certain that it is a majority; with many reports estimating the number at 60 to 70 percent.
There also is undoubtedly a longer life-span with Maple. Various research has discovered that the typical life-span of a Maple Bat within the MLB is about per month, versus about a week longevity span for Ash. So while you can find concerns among MLB officials regarding the safety risks associated with wood bats, Bat Manufactures will work hard alongside MLB officials to create a solution to the protection risks; aside from prohibiting maple bats from baseball.
Throughout all of the issues and controversy and worries surrounding Maple Baseball Bats, the demand is still there, and also the popularity continues to be growing. Maple bats may see some troubling times, but it appears as though the new bptdbt bat king is here now to stay.
Additionally, Major League Baseball has doubled its bat certification fee from $5,000 per company to $ten thousand. They’ve also doubled the insurance requirement from $5 million to $10 million.
In the long run, it is hoped that these particular measures will reduce the amount of dangerous broken bat episodes for everyone enjoying America’s pastime. However, these may be just the first steps that will be taken. Only time will inform.