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H.P. youth bats: how, when, and....why???

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  • H.P. youth bats: how, when, and....why???

    The Sporting Goods Manufacturing Assoc. is opening their spring propaganda offensive, which is intended to protect a lucrative market: high performance double-wall and composite bats for kids.

    Their web-site--DTMBA- was launched in April 07.** Most of the site's written material refers to HS bats, which are regulated.to somewhat wood-like levels. But the photos on their home page are of pre-teen kids--pre-teen kids swing un-regulated bats.

    When the dust clears, America's dads should be free to make informed decisions to buy whatever bats they want. Based on informed decisions.
    ______________
    **
    http://www.prweekus.com/DTMBA-unveil...article/57302/
    __________________________________________________ __________


    2004: When "Metal" Bats Became Obsolete in Youth Baseball

    I. High Performance Softball Bats for Men: Development

    "In the early 1990's, a former data processor named Ray DeMarini developed the first multiwalled softball bat. Unlike older models, it had two layers of aluminum. This innovation made the ball fly off the bat faster.." [NYTimes, 5/30/04]

    "DeMarini's double-wall bats feature two thin walls of aluminum alloy separated by a small gap that is filled with a lubricant so that the walls slide together. This technology is intended to generate a springboard effect along the length of the barrel." ["High-tech home run...", Product Design & Development, 6/1/03]

    "...Ray was unable to hit home runs. He was obsessed with being able to hit a home run and decided to develop a bat that would enable his power level (the power level of the masses) to do so." [Slammin' Demarini Archives]

    "The search for the ideal handheld trampoline is what occupies the existence of bat-tech professionals like Ray DeMarini..." ["Sporting Engineers...," Metropolis Mag.Com, 8/99]

    "Released in 1993, the DeMarini Doublewall was the world's first multi-wall bat. Like a modern golf driver or oversized tennis racket, the Doublewall had a giant "sweetspot," which allowed average players to hit like pros. DeMarini's sales exploded, and before long opposing bat manufacturers were clambering to produce Doublewall knockoffs." [Demarini About Us]

    " 'All the manufacturers ought to thank God I came along,' he says, 'because I made bats expensive. At the time, mine cost 220 percent more than any other bat on the market.' " ["Sporting...," 8/99]
    __________________________________________________ _________________

    II. High Performance Softball Bats for Men: On the Field: 1993-2008

    H.P. bats transformed men's slow-pitch: "Why are there so many home-runs these days.. the home-run problem... has come about largely because of the huge advances in bat technology... more disturbingly, basic safety began to be an increasing problem, as increased ball speeds translated into more and more injuries for infielders and pitchers. Things got so bad the ASA moved the pitchers' mound back..." ["Softball Home-runs: The Dark Side of Success", web article, by Jaime Louck]

    Risk in men's slow-pitch: "I do not disagree with their conclusion that high performance bats present a significant safety risk [in the game of slow-pitch softball].. more momentum and more kinetic energy goes into the collision with the pitcher's body...higher speed also means that the ball will behave less elastically..It should be no surprise that when [slow-pitch softball] players are hit by balls from high performance metal and composite bats, the injuries are more severe..." "Safety Concerns..", Dan Russell P.hd., The Sports Journal, 6/20/05

    __________________________________________________ _________________


    III. High Peformance Baseball Bats for Kids: Development

    [In 1998, DeMarini foresaw a potential lucrative market in high performance youth bats]
    .".. DeMarini said... somewhere down the line the company might introduce its Doublewall technology... to youth baseball bats. However, that would hinge upon developing the bats with exotic materials such as carbon fiber..."

    "DeMarini said the youth baseball bat market has been somewhat overlooked... he's at a loss to explain the void."

    " 'I frankly don't understand it because it's a big market,' DeMarini said. 'And these kids' parents will buy the bats like they'll buy themselves a hamburger. But I'm not overlooking it. I can't wait to get in it.' "
    ["Demarini Expects to Howl with New Youth Bat Line," Sporting Goods Business, 11/6/98]

    " '....our designers knew that they could put some serious technology into DeMarini bats without worrying about the cost.' Thinking along those lines, the folks at DeMarini developed the DeMarini F2, also known as the Bionic Bat..." ["High-tech home run...", 6/1/03]

    __________________________________________________ _________________

    IV. High Performance Baseball Bats for Kids: On the Field: 2004-2008

    March 2004: scaled-down models of the Stealth, Anderson, and DeMarini high performance men's slow-pitch softball bats appeared on youth ballfields:

    From a Little League Q & A:
    Q--“Are you allowed to use the DeMarini F2 double wall bat in Little League
    play? Seems to me this is asking for trouble and safety issues abound.”
    Mike Swaim

    A-- "...While much concern has been raised about the newer equipment and potential risk this may pose...until injuries show these bats are not safe, it is difficult to make the case that they shouldn’t be used." [LL ASAP Safety Newsletter, March 2004]
    _________________

    Two months later, a correspondent on a baseball message board reported:

    "Our League has seen a particular increase in pitchers' getting hurt from line drive come-backers. We had 5 kids injured and 3 in less than a week. Bats in particular are the Stealth, DeMarini, and Anderson...These bats are within LL specs?"
    [eteamz baseball message board, 5/13/04]
    __________________________

    For the entire year of 2004, LL had 21 "reported" batted-ball injuries to 7-12 year old pitchers, nationwide [LL On Line, Injured Pitcher Stats]

    In written testimony to the Pa. Legislature, LL Pres. Steve Keener noted that "reported injuries have decreased to their current level of 20-30 per year"
    [LL On Line, Little League Pres/CEO Steve Keener's Written Testimony]

    ________________________________________-

    2004 Little League World Series: "Anyone watching this? I may have been seeing things but, if I was, I was seeing a lot of things.... F2's, Re-loadeds, Connexions, and Stealths. These are slow-pitch softball bats. Is that legal in little league?"

    [Reply]: "Yes, I have been watching a lot of the LLWS... I think DeMarini's got a lot of money going into the tournament." [softballfans message board, 8/22/04]

    ______________________

    Steven Anderson, designer of the Anderson Techzilla multi-wall youth bat:
    "... My telling you that my product works better is my way of telling you to make an informed decision and send your son on the field with your eyes wide open. Assume the risk and protect your child."
    [eteamz baseball message board, 10/25/06]

    __________________________________________________ ______________
    SOURCES:

    "Openers: The Goods; Ready for Hardball Softball," NY Times, 5/30/04

    "High-tech home run: today's baseball and softball equipment designers are upgrading traditional gear for enhanced performance," Product Design and Development, 6/1/03
    http://findarticles.com/p/articles/m...6/ai_n18127741

    Slammin' DeMarini Archives, FAQ '97
    www.angelfire.com/on/slammin/DeMariniframes.html

    "Sporting engineers take swings at each other's pitches and hope that their wands will revolutionize softball." Metropolis Mag.Com, Aug. '99
    http://www.metropolismag.com/html/co...99/au99bat.htm

    DeMarini About Us
    www.demarini.com

    "Demarini Expects to Howl with New Youth Bat Line", Sporting Goods Business, 11/06/98
    http://www.allbusiness.com/retail-tr...4466193-1.html

    "Softball Home-run: The Dark Side of Success," web article, by Jaime Louck
    http://www.baseball-bats.net/news/so...home-runs.html

    "Safety concerns could be made stronger", letter by Dr. Dan Russell, The Sports Journal, 6/20/05 [note: this letter refers to men's softball, not youth baseball] [letter in response to "A Composite Softball Bat Revolution: Why the Pitcher has Little Time to React to a Batted-Ball". The Sport Journal Vol. 8(1)
    http://bjsm.bmj.com/cgi/eletters/39/4/223

    LL ASAP Safety Newsletter, 3/04: "...F2..asking for trouble...safety issues abound.." [p. 13]
    http://www.littleleague.org/programs...04asapnews.pdf

    "High Performance", eteamz baseball message board, 5/13/04: "These bats are within LL specs?"
    http://eteamz.active.com/baseball/bo...cfm?id=1285376

    LL On Line, LL Injured Pitcher Stats
    http://www.littleleague.org/media/In...tcherStats.pdf

    LL On Line, LL Pres/CEO Steve Keener's Written Testimony
    http://www.littleleague.org/media/testimony_bats07.asp

    "Little League World Series," softballfans message board, 8/22/04: "...slow-pitch softball bats...legal in Little League?"
    http://www.softballfans.com/forums/s...e+world+series

    "Why Not Wood???", eteamz baseball message board, 10/25/06: "Assume the risk and protect your child."
    http://eteamz.active.com/baseball/bo...cfm?id=1747789
    Last edited by freddy77; 03-11-2008, 01:26 PM.

  • #2
    Thanks Freddy...with your permission, I may send your post to Mr Keener and others in VA Little League. jima

    Comment


    • #3
      Yes, Jima, send it along.

      Working together, we can "bust the myths in the baseball bat debate"--to borrow the words of the Sporting Goods Manufacturing Association on their DTMBA web-site.

      Comment


      • #4
        Freddy Excellent post!
        "He who dares to teach, must never cease to learn."
        - John Cotton Dana (1856–1929) - Offered to many by L. Olson - Iowa (Teacher)
        Please read Baseball Fever Policy and Forum FAQ before posting.

        Comment


        • #5
          Freddy, this should be written in a white papare form taht we can distribute to all Little Leagues. Thoughts?
          "He who dares to teach, must never cease to learn."
          - John Cotton Dana (1856–1929) - Offered to many by L. Olson - Iowa (Teacher)
          Please read Baseball Fever Policy and Forum FAQ before posting.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by Jake Patterson View Post
            Freddy, this should be written in a white paper form that we can distribute to all Little Leagues. Thoughts?
            That sounds reasonable...but what is white paper form? Also, I received the HP Bat information via email. Are there authorship issues, or are web postings public domain. Do I have to ask permission, or do we just do it?

            Freddy77
            Last edited by freddy77; 03-11-2008, 02:27 PM.

            Comment


            • #7
              Jake, I think its a great idea. You know the more I think about it the more irritated I get that a Little League official (Steve Keener) used that position to deciminate information, that while not false, was not even-handed and objective. Promoting that website and acting as though "good" Little League parents should join them to rid baseball of people concerned about the safety issues surrounding metal bats, while at the very same time the bat makers brag about how their new bat has a bigger sweet spot and can hit it farther than last year's model, is, while not morally corrupt, would seem to be abstension of duty as a LLB official (damn long sentence and not very well constructed). The whole thing reminds me of double wall titanium heads in drivers....no one in their right mind doesn't believe that they don't hit the ball faster and farthrer...except there are no kids 46 and 60'6" away.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by freddy77 View Post
                That sounds reasonable...but what is white paper form? Also, I received the HP Bat information via email. Are there authorship issues, or are web postings public domain. Do I have to ask permission, or do we just do it?

                Freddy77
                Freddy,
                Anything that is published is fair game as long as you apply proper credit through citations. Here's a great resource http://citationmachine.net/index.php...le=2&all=#here
                I would be happy to help you with this.
                "He who dares to teach, must never cease to learn."
                - John Cotton Dana (1856–1929) - Offered to many by L. Olson - Iowa (Teacher)
                Please read Baseball Fever Policy and Forum FAQ before posting.

                Comment


                • #9
                  As a suggestion...

                  If you guys are really interested in taking this issue further, I don't know that the danger issue is the only thing to be considered.

                  If that is the only reason to ban metal, then you have to fight the statistics fom LL showing how few injuries there really are. There isn't enough wood bat play to really get a good sample size to prove the safety argument. We've discussed this in a thread a little while ago. It doesn't mean you're wrong, it's just a tough battle to fight when LL collects the stats that you need to prove your point. Not that they would ever have motivation to fudge the numbers...

                  What I think you also need to do is turn one of the LL points agianst them. Namely, the cost factor. While LL wants to bring up the cost of replacing wood bats, they skirt the issue of how kids are getting a competitive advantage just because their parents can afford to buy a $300 bat. Where does that leave the kid who has parents that can only afford a $29 Wal-Mart special? (Not to mention expensive gloves, baseball camps, etc. - but that's really not the issue here..)

                  I think the whole cost of replacing bats issue is a joke really. My son's stealth cost about 10 times more than his wood BP bat. I'm pretty sure it would take a long time for him to break that many bats - much longer than that stealth is going to last.

                  I'm not really old enough to remember well, but anybody old enough to have played LL with wood bats have memories of them breaking all the time? I'm curious.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Find a very sad video of a kid getting hit in a game by the hard pitch. Then show it to all the parents... the parents will take care of the rest

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by ralanprod View Post
                      I'm not really old enough to remember well, but anybody old enough to have played LL with wood bats have memories of them breaking all the time? I'm curious.
                      I did, and we didn't much. Perhaps the trees were tougher back then. I have managed to break a couple of my son's bats on outside pitches he hit off the end of the bat.
                      Have Fun and Play Hard!

                      Chuck Faulkner
                      Tazewell TN 37879
                      The Glove Medic

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by ralanprod View Post
                        I'm not really old enough to remember well, but anybody old enough to have played LL with wood bats have memories of them breaking all the time? I'm curious.
                        No! I can't remember breaking more than a few and taht wasn;t until we got to MS. We would however recycle our old bats and make them rock bats and smash rocks into the lake for hours.
                        "He who dares to teach, must never cease to learn."
                        - John Cotton Dana (1856–1929) - Offered to many by L. Olson - Iowa (Teacher)
                        Please read Baseball Fever Policy and Forum FAQ before posting.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I'd just like the opportunity to send out a well thought out paper that refutes much of what's contained in the "don't take my bat away" website so parents and the public at least get balanced view and can make educated decisions.

                          Comment

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