There is definitely a lot of truth in the fact that hitters were helped by the use of bats that performed substantially better than wood. But let’s draw an analogy here to see if we can’t better describe what took place.
Assume wood bats are like a typical family sedan. That would make non-wood bats equate to automobiles that perform better than that typical one, but there would be different gradients. FI, a mid-level, mid-priced BESER bat might equate to a fairly high quality performance car like a standard Corvette, but then there would also be the “super bats” that would equate to a Bugatti Veyron.
Just like all cars that perform better than a typical family sedan, won’t go 258 MPH or need tires that cost in excess of $20,000 for a set and only last 10,000 miles, not every bat used by every player was a super-hot, rolled composite that was launching balls the way the Veyron’s power plant launches it from 0 to 60 in less than 2.5 seconds. IOW, not all players were using super-bats, and certainly using a super-bat didn’t insure hitting success, any more than putting me in an Indy car would make me a good Indy car driver.
Batters still had put the bat in the correct place to take advantage of the performance benefits, so although the bat definitely could help once it met a ball, it wasn’t as though a batter didn’t’ need any skills at all.
And if non-wood performs almost the same as wood, why is wood so preferable?
Last edited by scorekeeper; 04-25-2012 at 04:30 PM.
The pitcher who’s afraid to throw strikes, will soon be standing in the shower with the hitter who's afraid to swing.