Comparison BBCOR bats and Aluminum Bats

A wide range of baseball bats are available on the market. This can be perplexing at times and you may get confused as to which bat best suits your needs. If you are looking for a BBCOR bat, you will be faced with a long list of available bats.

Similarly, when it comes to bats made from different materials, aluminum-made bats alone feature a long list. Here we are providing you with a comparison of BBCOR bats with that of aluminum bats to give you a fair estimate of the pros and cons of each type of bat. This comparison will enable you to make an informed decision when purchasing each.

BBCOR bats Pros and Cons

BBCOR stands for ‘Batted Ball Coefficient of Restitution.’ This is a defined standard which refers to the performance of a baseball bat. This standard defines that the maximum trampoline effect that a bat has must not exceed 0.50 when used in BBCOR baseball matches.

The standard ensures that a BBCOR bat is not able to hit balls more than a given speed, ensuring the safety of the pitchers and standardizing the performance of the players. A BBCOR bat is not allowed to carry a barrel of more than 2 5/8” in diameter and must not exceed 36” in length.

Most BBCOR bats, especially those used in High School, are made from composite material. Since composite materials offers maximum trampoline effect, the BBCOR standard is used to control and regulate their performance.

Composite BBCOR bats are typically light-weight which means that you can swing them with great speed. They also come with a comparatively larger sweet spot and a good pop compared to aluminum bats.

A large sweet spot lets you hit the baseball right and into the distance with ease. One major drawback of a composite BBCOR bat is that it has to be broken in – this means that you have to hit the baseball a certain number of times with the bat before the bats gets warmed up and reaches its optimal performance.

Aluminum Bats Pros and Cons

bats-pro-for-guru-aluminumThe most overwhelming advantage of using an aluminum bat is that it is very durable. Being tough in its construction, an aluminum bat can be used in rough weather conditions and usually lasts far longer than composite bats.

At the same time, an aluminum bat costs less than a composite BBCOR bat. So you essentially get a more long-lasting bat by spending less. Aluminum bats are also quite light-weight and very strong in their construction.

However, composite BBCOR bats are lighter than aluminum bats. Aluminum bats also offer significant trampoline effect. But you can make the most out of an aluminum bat if you have a strong hand.

If you can hit powerful shots, an aluminum bat can do wonders for you. You can use an aluminum stick to play such powerful shots which are not possible with a BBCOR bat.

Another major advantage of using an aluminum bat is that unlike a BBCOR bat, they don’t need a break-in period. This means that as soon as you take the wraps off a new aluminum bat, the bat is ready for use on the field and you can start hitting long shots with it right away.

Comparison

As mentioned above, both types of bats have their pros and cons. BBCOR bats are made from composite material and offer greater trampoline effect. They are also lighter in weight which means that you can swing them with greater speed and ease.

However, BBCOR bats are typically expensive and they are not as durable. So if your BBCOR bats gets a dent or gets even a little damage, it may become unusable any further.

In comparison, aluminum bats are heavier than composite bats but they are very durable. Being made from very strong material, aluminum bats also favor powerful hitting.

So although you compromise a little on the speed when wielding an aluminum bat, you are able to get advantage in terms of hitting power. Another great thing about an aluminum bat is that it lasts longer than a BBCOR bat and it doesn’t get damaged easily.

Even if it gets damaged a little, you can continue to use an aluminum bat unlike a BBCOR bat.

Conclusion

When choosing between these two types of bats, it really depends on your usage of the bat. If you are looking to gain maximum swing speed and rapid hitting, the best bbcor bats are the way to go. It may cost you more but you will be able to make the most out of your money in terms of hitting performance. On the other hand, if you are a well-trained player and have a record of heavy hitting, wielding an aluminum bat can give you a great advantage on the field. You can hit more powerful shots with an aluminum bat and purchase the bat in a far less price.

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Softball Hitting Tips and Tricks

Hitting the ball right is one of the most important parts of a softball game. If you are on the pitch with a bat, hitting hard and far is the only thing you should aim for. However, hitting right in a softball game requires a good understanding of the swinging mechanics as well as a mastery over several aspects. Following are some tips and tricks that will help you champion record-breaking hitting in softball games:

Grasping the bat with the right grip is a key part of hitting well. The main thing to understand in gripping a softball bat is that you should apply the grip with your fingers and not palms. If you are right-handed, your left hand should grip the bat closer to the base while the right hand would loosely support the bat with a grip closer to the barrel.

If you want to control the movement of the bat during hitting more accurately, you should choke up on it. This means that you should hold the bat closer to the barrel. This has the advantage of allowing you to precisely know how the bat will move and where it will hit the ball. But it also comes with the disadvantage of less power in the hit and a smaller bat.

When hitting a softball, the arms should be bent and held close to the body. This will ensure that your hit is powerful enough to toss the softball into the distance. You should also keep your shoulders loose and use them to rotate your upper body with an easy swing when hitting the softball.

When aiming to hit an incoming softball, you should bend your knees just a little. This gives your body stance the flexibility required for the upper body rotation when swinging the bat. The bent knees also gives you more stability when standing in the plate.

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Keep your weight balanced on the balls of your feet. This will give you the freedom of movement during swing which will help you add sufficient momentum to your hit upon contact with the softball. The swing movement of your bat should stay 5 to 7 inches from your body. And your arms should stay bent until the last moment when you finally extend your arm and channel your swing’s momentum to the softball.

Hand-to-eye coordination is critically important for effective hitting in a softball game. You should train your eye to accurately track the movement of a ball during a pitch. This can be accomplished by extensively practicing hitting and training your eye to instantly register a ball during a pitch. Once you practice enough, you will develop an instinct to automatically track the softball during a pitch.

A good way to track the movement of a ball is to practice exclusively on this aspect. This can be done by standing between the pitcher and the catcher without a bat and to simply practice keeping your eyes on the ball. Called Hawk Eye, this kind of drill is very useful in helping the players maintain sight of the ball.

Your head and eyes should remain still during the swinging and hitting motion. This is an important part of being able to track the movement of the incoming softball. Even while your arms and shoulders are rotating, you should practice to keep your head still so that the softball firmly remains in the line of your sight.

You should practice perfecting your front-foot stride when hitting the softball. Front foot plays a critical part in providing you a basic pivot on which to base the momentum of your hit. Ideally, you should not place your front foot more than 8 inches before you. Also, the angle of the foot should ideally be 45 degrees with respect to the plate.

Ensure that your arms remain bent until the last moment before hitting. You extend your arms just before hitting the softball but this timing is crucial. If you extend your arms before reaching the hitting zone, the bat path will make an unnecessarily longer arc and you will consequently lose the speed and momentum of your hit.

When swinging the bat and aiming for a square hit, push away the ball of the back foot. This would give the rest of your body a rotating momentum towards the incoming ball. By basing this momentum on the front foot, you will be able to remain stable when hitting the ball with maximum power.

Know the position of the pitch and then decide your movement accordingly. You require a different hitting motion for an inside pitch, middle pitch and outside pitch ball. An inside pitch requires you to come into the hitting zone sooner and open the hips more quickly for a rapid movement. A pitch down the middle is relatively easier to tackle but you must time your swinging perfectly to reach the hitting zone at the right time. The position to tackle the pitch down the middle is directly opposite the front hip. An outside pitch requires a slightly delayed swinging movement which means you should open your hips and extend your arms slightly later than usual.

Even after your bat makes contact with the ball, the hit is incomplete. You still need to continue pushing the bat with all your momentum until the ball is tossed into the distance. This is ideally done by bearing down with weight upon the front leg and solidly channeling the strength of your movement into the ball.

Upper body and lower body strength are very important in ensuring a smooth, well-timed and powerful hit during a softball game. You can take up different exercises to perform regularly in order to muster strength through your body. Push-ups and crunches are a good way to attain strength.

Practice swinging and hitting as often as possible. The sheer amount of practice you put into these two activities will ensure their improvement. The more you practice, the more adept you become at hitting the softball with the right timing, with sufficient enough power and into the right distance.

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How to Improve Hitting in Softball

Hitting a round ball with a round bat is one of the most difficult things to do in all of sports. That being said there are a few techniques that will greatly help improve hitting in softball.

If you follow them than your batting average and power hitting will vastly increase. Without further ado, here are some great tips that will show you how to improve hitting in softball.

Your grip on the bat is extremely important and is one of the key aspects of a good swing. The hitter should apply pressure with his or her fingers, not the palms of their hands. The bottom hand controls the bat while the top hand should help to loosely support it.

how-to-improve-hitting-in-softball

For right-handed batters use the right hand for the top grip and the left hand for the bottom grip. Of course, left-handed batters should reverse this order. The bottom hand should grip the bat as if you are shaking hands. Think of it as gripping a gold club or a hammer.

Next, place the top hand against the bottom hand in a straight line. Do not cross your arms. Grip the bat loosely so that your wrists have flexibility. In order to control the bat better, some players prefer to choke up on it by moving their hands up a few inches from the knob or bottom of the bat handle. This will result in a shorter bat, which means less power.

Hand position is also extremely important. Your hands should start out close to your body, approximately three to four inches in front of your chest and between the shoulders. Keep both elbows down, which will enable your shoulders to remain tension free. This is called the power position.

The next step is to swing the bat, however before you do so it is important to keep the following in mind. Start your swing with the hips and legs while keeping your hands and shoulders back. Push off of the ball with your back foot as the ball approaches the plate.

Slowly rotate your hips and move the back knee while staying parallel to the ground. At this stage you must keep your head and eyes level, straight, and still. Move the bottom of the bat towards the ball without allowing the top to fall below the hands.

Keep your lead arm in a ninety-degree angle. This will enable you to swing in a shorter, more compact arc. The next step is to drive the front shoulder to the ball while keeping your arms bent. Rotate your top hand so that it is close to facing up during contact. Continue to rotate your hips and make sure that your back leg drives firmly forward.

You are now at the point of contact otherwise know as hitting the ball. Drive the bat through the ball on a level plane. Both arms should be fully extended once contact is initiated. At this point, you should be looking down both of your arms and the barrel of the bat. A V will form between them, and point to the contact spot.

Allow your body to blow into the ball. Once contact is made, the swing is not over. It is key that you swing all the way through.

We hope that these tips on how to improve hitting in softball have helped you. Just remember to follow them and your game will be greatly improved. Have fun, and swing for the fences.

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The Art of Diving for a Baseball in the Outfield

When the whistle is blown, a little jiggle is seen in the field. Now the fans draw closer and all players get prepared to take away the show. The batters yearn for the best hit and the outfielders desire to catch without a miss. As obvious, most outfielders defend by some sweeping-like catching.

the-art-of-diving-for-a-baseball-in-the-outfield

Yet when the competition gets even more enticing, some outfielders who have learnt it often defend by diving. Diving in baseball does not just make an awesome show to the fans; it also symbolizes a level of maturity and experience in baseball.

Then again, one wonders how best one can learn/develop the art of diving for a baseball when catching. In this edition, I will illustrate the best approaches when one intends to make a dive. All the approaches will require you to put on the baseball glove before any simulation.

Diving Approach #1 – Full Airborne

This is the basic diving approach and it should be easier to read through and simulate with ease. One key precaution is that you should always be able to keep a keen eye on the batter and his slightest move.

Steps:

  • Keenly observe the ball immediately it leaves contact with the bat upon being hit and study the direction of the ball.
  • Bend and straighten your arms towards the assumed direction of the ball.
  • Now depending on the arm with the glove, raise one of your feet slightly higher than the other. That is, for lefties to raise their left leg and the righties to opt for their right leg.
  • Now make a slow dive with the eyes focused on the ball and the arm with a glove directed towards the glove. Allow both legs to leave the ground while diving towards the ball and keep the body almost parallel to the ground.
  • If the ball moves towards the glove, open the glove into a basket-like opening and grip the ball as you slant the glove towards the ground.
  • If the ball slants towards the throwing hand, be keen to open the glove into a slanted web-like opening and grip it with the glove facing the direction of the slant.

Take precaution:

  • When diving, not to let your body be lateral or slanted. Always strive to make it parallel to the ground.
  • Diving is daring. It at times means breaking a few logical rules. For instance, often outfield defenders are trained to take a step back at times just to avoid head injuries. When diving, one has to be time conscious. He/she will first dive but be keen to place his/her head slightly above or below the level of the ball.
  • Though diving is fancy, it should only be encouraged when it becomes absolutely necessary. Diving is dangerous too.
  • Lastly, for a beginner in diving, one may be tempted to fold the by the ankles when diving for fear of hurting the belly. Even so, this is a highly dangerous act that should never be encouraged. When you dive, put the arms straight, and let it go. That is it.

Diving Approach #2 – Partial Airborne

This approach is a lot safer. It is not so fancy. Even so, it is much better owing to safety. Then again, it may need a lot of practice before one fully acquaints with the art fully. Since the two approaches are almost similar, please notice that the step listed below are only the specified steps that differentiate approach two from approach one above.

Distinguishing Steps in Approach 2

  • Where as in the first approach one went fully airborne with both feet and the body, in this approach, one foot (preferably the foot of the throwing hand) will remain slightly attached to the ground to give it a balance.
  • While in approach one both arms went flying, in this approach only the arm with the glove flies as the other arm keeps a slight balance with the ground.
  • After catching, don’t use the arms to raise, rather coil the legs and use them to get up.

Take Precaution:

  • When making a landing in this approach, be keen to spread your legs a little wider and make the upper body parallel to the ground as in approach one.
  • Since this approach appreciates taking on one foot being a little higher than another and arising by the legs-first, one has to be extra careful on the position of the knees when landing.

In a Nutshell:

  • He will be safer him who takes on a partial airborne dive than a full airborne dive.
  • He will be safer him whose whole concentration will be on the ball and nothing else.
  • He will be safer him who will read and practice it as regular as possible before engaging.
  • He will not be defeated him who knows the art of diving well and how to use it.
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Tips for Winning in Slow Pitch Softball

Slow pitch softball is a terrific game that can be played at a high level of competition, or for pure fun. It is a sport played by girls, boys, and adults.

Much like any sport or game, the object of playing slow pitch softball is to win. Winning can be done in many different ways, however the outcome will greatly depend on the skill of the players, and the amount of time dedicated to practicing and playing the sport.

The following tips will greatly increase your chances of winning a slow pitch softball game, so here is how it is done.

tips-for-winning-in-slow-pitch-softball

It all starts with defense, well sort of. You probably have heard one of the oldest sports clichés, which makes the claim that a good defense wins games.

That is correct to a certain degree; however unlike some other sports it is impossible to score runs while playing defense in slow pitch softball game. That being said, defense alone will not cause a victorious outcome.

However, it is a great area to start. If you can contain the other team from scoring, otherwise know as pitching a shut out, than your team only needs to bat in one run in order to win the game. So when all is said and done, a great defense will certainly help to win a slow pitch softball game.

Offense is the most crucial aspect regarding winning a slow pitch softball game. If a team does not hit the ball, they will not score any runs. Without scoring runs, it is impossible to win. Although it may sound simple, hitting a round ball with a round bat is the hardest thing to do in all of sports.

That is why a batting average of .350 is considered outstanding. Pretty much in everything else, sports or otherwise, an average of doing something correctly only 3.5 times out of 10 tries is considered an epic failure. Imagine getting a raise for a 35 percent production rate, or rewarding a child for scoring a 35 out of 100 on a test? Now that we have woken up from a dream world, let us take a closer look at some of the most important aspects of hitting.

The key to a slow pitch softball winning offense is not hitting the ball deep for home runs. Home runs are certainly great because they count as an automatic run, and possibly multiple runs if batters are already on base. However, the best home run hitters are lucky if they hit one every twenty-five times at bats. That means they will typically hit one home run every five games.

Having players on base is the key to wining slow pitch softball games, and the way to accomplish that is to have batters place or hit the ball into gaps in the field.

Gaps are the areas where fielders are not standing. Even a team’s worst players should be able to make contact with the ball enough to earn an occasional base hit. The more hits, the more people on base, and of course the more runs scored.

As we have reviewed, it takes a good offense and defense to win in a slow pitch softball game. Remember that old saying, practice makes perfect? That mantra certainly holds true when it comes to the sport of softball.

If you would like to win, it is critical to practice both hitting, and fielding. Most importantly try to have some fun. By the way you should have the best slowpitch softball bats. This will guaranteed the win for you. You could find them at kandkadventures.com. There are any things in this for you.

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Comparising Aluminum bats and Composite bats

Over the years, the materials used in making baseball bats alongside the techniques have changed drastically. It started out with the good old wooden bat after which came the aluminum bat and now composite bats are all the rage.

However, these days, aluminum bats are being used as much as composite ones. They differ in cost, force required, durability and of course, overall performance.

Depending on what kind of player you are and what suits your situation, any one of these bats might suit you. It can be hard to decide which one you should be using. So we did the comparison for you and found out the pros and cons of both kinds of bats.

Aluminum bats

Introduced in the 1970s, aluminum bats are, as the name suggests, made of aluminum or alloys. Aluminum bats were definitely a step-up from wooden bats.

As the barrel of an aluminum bat is hollow, the distribution of mass along the rest of the body is considerably different than it is for a solid wooden bat. Aluminum bats have, what players call, “the trampoline effect”.

It is better and easier to hit the ball with an aluminum bat as compared to a wooden bat. They are also made with single wall and double wall barrels. The ball comes off a single wall bat faster but the double wall bats provide a larger sweet spot.

Composite bats

Introduced in the mid 1980s, composite bats are the latest kind of baseball bats. As opposed to aluminum or wooden bats, composite bats are made of reinforced carbon fiber polymer.

Some are 100 percent composite. Others have composite barrels and handles made from carbon, steel alloys or other different materials. Even though most players are using composite bats these days, they do have some cons as well.

Now, we compare the pros and cons aluminum and composite bats about the following traits.

Performance

In aluminum bats, the unique design and the materials used, make them incredibly light. This results in the player being able to hit the ball with considerably less force.

The thin barrel walls give the bat a trampoline effect. The ball also travels a greater distance at a greater speed due to this. Aluminum bats are hot out of the wrapper.

This means that there is no need for breaking in to aluminum bats. They give their best performance from the very first hit. So the performance of aluminum bats can be very much satisfactory.

Composite bats are even lighter than aluminum bats. They have a larger barrel and a flexible handle. These things are a huge advantage. Composite bats, due to their construction, provide a larger sweet spot than aluminum bats.

However, one con of composite bats is that they need breaking in to. New composite bats cannot be used directly in the field. You will need to practice a few different shots in order to bring the bat to its full potential. And even then, it gets better as you keep using it over the years. A nicely broken in composite bat, out-performs an aluminum bat.

Durability

Aluminum bats have a pro that they are very durable. However, they have been known to dent over time and that makes the performance considerably less effective.

They are still more durable than composite bats. If you are on a budget and looking to make an investment, aluminum bats are a safer choice than composite bats

Composite bats, as stated above, are less durable than aluminum bats. They have been known to perform poorly in cold weathers. It has also been seen that composite bats tend to break in weather that is cooler than 60 or 65 degrees. So this choice can be affected by the weather conditions of where you are living.

Cost

Cost in another pro for aluminum bats. They are considerably less expensive. Even though, a good aluminum bat can have a price as high as $500, one can get a reasonably good aluminum bat for even less than $200.

While you can get a lower-end aluminum bat for as low as $30. Needless to say, no matter what your budget is, you can easily buy a good aluminum bat.

Composite bats are slightly cost prohibitive when compared to aluminum bats. The price for a good composite bat only starts at $200 and can be as high as $500.

Conclusion

Each type of bat has its own pros and cons. Aluminum bats are less expensive, more durable and don’t require a break-in process. However, they have a smaller trampoline effect and sweet spot. They are also heavier than composite bats and require more inertia.

Composite bats, on the other hand, provide more swing speed and have less weight. They require less force from the player. They have reduced vibration and more damping effect. They also provide a larger sweet spot. However, they are less durable, more expensive and do require a break-in process.

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