According to Major League Baseball, 2,232 baseball bats were shattered by batters from July to the end of the regular season. 756 of those bats broke into multiple pieces. An MLB research team was introduced after several high profile accidents seriously injured spectators, a base coach, and, finally, a plate umpire. Additionally, several close calls were reported including one having a team president and one with Bobby Cox, manager with the Atlanta Braves. The researchers found that maple bats were 3 times as prone to shatter into multiple pieces than more traditional ash bats.
The researchers’ recommendations were given to MLB in December. While there are very likely numerous reasons behind the dramatic ruptures fans witness with maple, researchers are currently focusing on the structure of wood grain for maple bats. Most notably, maple grains have to be as straight as possible. Unlike ash, straight grains for maple are not as easy to discover. Whatever the form of wood, researchers feel bats are more inclined to fail when the so-called “slope of grain” is in excess of one inch more than a 20-inch length of the bat (just under 3-degrees). Furthermore, the face area from the bat that strikes the ball has to be reconfigured by moving the trademark a quarter of a turn for maple.
It’s been about nearly 9 years since Barry Bonds broke the single season home run record when using a Maple Baseball Bat through the season. That magical season in baseball was the showcase year for Maple Bats. Although players like Joe Carter used Maple even as far back as inside the late 1980’s, maple never really took off until the 2001 season when Bonds crushed 73 home runs to get rid of the only season homerun record in baseball. From that point on, maple surged into a lot more hands in baseball…and maple hasn’t looked back from the time.
Several things within our society turn out to be fads, and never survive the trying times. Maple baseball bats are beginning to silence the critics who may have been loud advocates against maple. There were multiple instances where maple has been to blame of major injuries in baseball. A leading example was during the 2008 season when Pittsburgh Pirates hitting coach Don Long was hit within the face just below the eyes with a huge chunk of Nate McLouth’s maple bat through the eighth inning of a game at Dodgers Stadium. Witnesses say that chunk seemed to be about half from the bat. Just ten days later, another maple bat chunk flew out of the hands of the Colorado Rockies Todd Helton and flew into the stands and broke the jaw of any Dodgers fan.
Plenty of players concerned about the security with their teammates, coaches and fans have even switched from Maple to Ash or Birch. Including a few seasons back, when Frank Thomas and Eric Chavez switched from Maple to Birch, and Jason Bay switched to Ash from Birch.
A 2005 study commissioned through the MLB found that there was clearly no difference in how quickly the ball comes off a maple or ash bat. Yet still maple appears to give hitters a confidence that ash does not. Even though the exact quantity of players who swing maple inside the MLB is unknown, it is actually certain that it must be a majority; with some reports estimating the quantity at 60 to 70 percent.
There also is undoubtedly a lengthier lifespan with Maple. Various studies have discovered that the normal lifespan of any Maple Bat in the MLB is about monthly, versus in regards to a week longevity span for Ash. So while you will find concerns among MLB officials concerning the safety risks related to cheap maple bats, Bat Manufactures will work hard alongside MLB officials to produce a means to fix the protection risks; apart from prohibiting maple bats from baseball.
Throughout all the issues and controversy and worries surrounding Maple Baseball Bats, the demand is still there, and also the popularity remains growing. Maple bats may see some troubling times, but it appears as if the brand new bptdbt bat king is here to keep.
In addition, Major League Baseball has doubled its bat certification fee from $5,000 per company to $ten thousand. They’ve also doubled the liability insurance requirement from $5 million to $10 million.
In the end, it really is hoped that these particular measures will reduce the quantity of dangerous broken bat episodes for anyone enjoying America’s pastime. However, these might be merely the first steps that might be taken. Only time will tell.