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  • Bat Size Question

    My son is a lengthy, 5'11", 160 pound high school freshman. I bought him a 33 inch bbcor bat 6 months ago, which he's been using since. I consulted a few bat size charts to help identify the best size, and also had my son try a few demo bats at a local hitting facility. Today, one of his high school assistant coaches told him that almost nobody his age uses a 33, and that he should be swinging a 32 inch bat. In the past, my son has chosen bats that ended up being too heavy and slowing down his bat speed, and later dropping to a smaller bat. What do you think about his bat size choice given his age and body size?

  • #2
    What is his power/batspeed? Do you have an EV for him?

    I would say for many 15-16 year olds a 32 would be beneficial unless the are big or already have good power. Alternatively a balanced 33 could also work.
    I now have my own non commercial blog about training for batspeed and power using my training experience in baseball and track and field.

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    • #3
      Is there a Dick's with hittrax near you? Your kid can measure his ev with a few bats. They use foam balls but the measurement is still relevant to determine the best bat for your kid.

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      • #4
        My son was a couple inches shorter and about the same weight HS Fresh year. He used a 31" that year, went to a 32" as a Soph, 33" balanced as a Jr, and 33" end loaded Sr year (used a 34" sparingly). He's a college Soph now and still using a 33" end loaded (using 34" sparingly). IMO, swing the heaviest bat that you can without compromising bat speed, that's where it's at. Don't get caught up in the "Johnny and Joe are using this size bat so you should too", use the one that HE is comfortable swinging and making good consistent HARD contact.
        Ty Cobb-"Every great batter works on the theory that the pitcher is more afraid of him than he is of the pitcher."

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        • #5
          my son is a 6'0.5"/175 frosh. he swings an endloaded 33 (xl1). his travel teammate is a 6'5"/240 soph. he swings a balanced 33 (meta). each kid is different. if they can keep their mechanics and hit the ball hard while being comfortable with the bat, then let them swing it, imo.

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          • #6
            Thanks for the replies. Is it a good general rule to pick the bat size that produces the highest EV?

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            • #7
              Bat size is about more than size. It’s also about strength and bat speed. It’s also about the psychology of being comfortable with a bat.

              In 13u my son was 5’2” 100. He used a 31/28. He moved to a 32/29 after a growth burst got him to 5’11 135 freshman year. He hit .340 on varsity and 300+ on a national 17u travel team soph year at 6’ 160. It’s not easy to convince a successful player to make a change. The next year at 6’1” 170 I convinced him to move up to a 33/30. for more impact and power. He didn’t swing a 34/31 until college at 6’2” 195.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by octoad View Post
                Thanks for the replies. Is it a good general rule to pick the bat size that produces the highest EV?
                Not necessarily. Most important is the need to consistently barrel up live pitching. A bat with the highest EV might not provide enough control in order to obtain the required consistency level....

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                • #9
                  I have two sons that have played over 1500 games between them, and one is currently playing in college. Bat size has always been our thing.. I actually think that the single biggest problem with 95% of youth/high school baseball batters is that they use a bat that is too big. Having said that, if you could swing it, then go 33. I would disagree that nobody uses a 33". I'm willing to bet that 33" is the most common bat size, by a large margin, from age 15-professional. Both of my sons started using a 33" when they were 15U eligible. My younger son is just 15U eligible this summer. he used a 32" last year. Over the winter, it appears as if he is swinging the 33" better now. But it's an easy thing to check. I'm sure his coach has a radar gone. Just measure his exit velo off a tee with each bat. some coaches even have one of those tools to measure bat speed - diamond kinetics, zepp, etc. We have a ZEPP, but never really used it. But the ultimate answer is that Bat speed is where it's at. The faster you could swing, the harder you will hit the ball, and the farther it will go. And the quicker you could swing, the longer you have to wait to swing, which gives you more time to identify a pitch.
                  Last edited by Mikeymazz; 02-07-2020, 08:47 AM.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Mikeymazz View Post
                    . I actually think that the single biggest problem with 95% of youth/high school baseball batters is that they use a bat that is too big.
                    I agree, except for the percentage. I think that the majority (IMO, not 95% lol) use an over-sized bat.

                    But you have to choose your battles.

                    As a dad of four sons, I chose to fight that battle. I wouldn't allow them to swing a bat that was too big.

                    Now, as a coach of other people's kids, I don't fight it, because it's too pervasive, and bats are too personal.

                    If they ask me, I'll steer them away from an over-sized bat. Otherwise, I stay out of it.

                    Skip

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by skipper5 View Post

                      I agree, except for the percentage. I think that the majority (IMO, not 95% lol) use an over-sized bat.

                      But you have to choose your battles.

                      As a dad of four sons, I chose to fight that battle. I wouldn't allow them to swing a bat that was too big.

                      Now, as a coach of other people's kids, I don't fight it, because it's too pervasive, and bats are too personal.

                      If they ask me, I'll steer them away from an over-sized bat. Otherwise, I stay out of it.
                      want an idea for your team... I don't know how old they are, but here's what I did for my youth teams: I'm the dad that goes and buys my son the bat that I think is best for him. sometimes it's a very expensive bat. Some moms and dads are buying their son the $89 bat. or worse, they buy their son the more expensive bat that is too big. That kid invariably tries my son's bat and swings it better. before you know it, 3-4 kids are using my son's bat. then, maybe half of the team ends up using it. There was always 2-3 bats that everyone used.. So 13/14 moms and dads spent money on bats, but the kids were only using 2-3 of them. It was a toal waste of money.
                      want an idea for your team... I don't know how old they are, but here's what I did for my youth teams: I'm the dad that goes and buys my son the bat that I think is best for him. sometimes it's a very expensive bat. Some moms and dads are buying their son the $89 bat. or worse, they buy their son the more expensive bat that is too big. That kid invariably tries my son's bat and swings it better. before you know it, 3-4 kids are using my son's bat. then, maybe half of the team ends up using it. There was always 2-3 bats that everyone used.. So 13/14 moms and dads spent money on bats, but the kids were only using 2-3 of them. It was a total waste of money. So what I did was get the parents to agree to contribute to 3 team bats. Now, instead of everyone going and spending between $89-$350, I would go buy 3 high end bats(different sizes) and split the cost 13/14 ways. Everyone LOVED spending a fraction of the money. And their son was using the bat that they paid for! It has to be a team decision – either all in or all out. You can’t let some opt out. Here’s what will happen: they will all opt in. some will still go buy their son his own bat anyway. I still always bought my son his own bat. But by contributing a nominal amount to the team bats, I assured “protection” of my son’s bat, since nobody would be using it any more. Ultimate clincher: at the end of the season I would throw names in a hat and raffle off the 3 bats. So, 3 parents end up with that high end bat anyway – for a fraction of the cost. I never had a team that didn’t love this. You could even buy 4-5 bats if you get a couple mid range/lower end bats.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by skipper5 View Post

                        I agree, except for the percentage. I think that the majority (IMO, not 95% lol) use an over-sized bat.

                        But you have to choose your battles.

                        As a dad of four sons, I chose to fight that battle. I wouldn't allow them to swing a bat that was too big.

                        Now, as a coach of other people's kids, I don't fight it, because it's too pervasive, and bats are too personal.

                        If they ask me, I'll steer them away from an over-sized bat. Otherwise, I stay out of it.
                        I'd say they tend to be too long rather than too heavy, for the most part (in youth ball).

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                        • #13
                          EV is a good benchmark, the other consideration is feel/confidence. My kid used the combination of the two. He switched to the axe bat. The EV was not necessarily better than the other BBCOR but he felt more comfortable with it because he uses the ace bat trainers and the Victus wood axe bat for HS.

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