The making of baseball bats is an art form for some. Wooden baseball bats vary in what material they are made of. There are four primary materials that wooden bats consist of. They are bamboo, maple, ash, and birch. Within the four essential components of bat-making lies a grey area of composite bats made up of more than one of the four materials together. This article will talk about the differences in using each one of the four main types of wooden bats. Hopefully, by the end, you can decide for yourself which kind of wood bat reigns supreme as the best in the business.
Arguably the best wood to be used for wooden bats. Maple bats became a popular lumber choice in the late 90s. Maple wood offers hitters a sturdy and extremely durable bat that will last longer than any of the other woods. Maple wood bats are not recommended for novice hitters because of the power they hold behind it. The maple bat is diffuse-porous wood or close grain. Close grain wood means that the bat will hold together under frequent high-impact. The more you hit, the denser the wood gets.
The Ash wood bat became a staple in baseball early on. New developments and materials give players more options when picking a wooden bat, but some still prefer the classics. Ash bats are not as durable as Maple bats but are favored for their light weight and speed when swinging. The Ash bat is a porous ring wood or, open grain. The open grain means that the bat will continue to dry throughout its use making it more susceptible to chipping, cracks, and breakage.
Considered to be the mediator between Maple and Ash bats is a Birchwood bat. Birch bats have a close grain build to them making them more durable similar to how maple bats act. A Birch bat is lighter than maple making it faster to swing without the problems of an open grain bat like Ash. A significant problem with Birch bats is that there is a “break-in” period for them when initially being used. The Birch bat may dent at first and takes time to reach its desired performance.
Bamboo bats are arguably the most durable wooden bats. Bamboo bats are in violation of Major League Baseball rules because of the way they are made. Bamboo bats act similar to Maple bats and can withstand intense and repetitive impact over an extended period.