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Posted by on Jan 27, 2015 in All, Training | 59 comments

How To Find The Right-Size Bat

How To Find The Right-Size Bat

One of the most common mistakes youth players make occurs long before they step foot in the batter’s box, or even take a practice swing; it can happen in a moment or after days of deliberation.

Choosing the wrong-size bat is an easy thing to do. Options are plentiful, and can be overwhelming to players and parents, especially those new to the game. Rusty Trudeau, a longtime high school baseball coach, now managing national baseball and softball accounts here at Baden Sports, said he sees it happen every year.

“Oh yeah, most all of them,” he said, when asked how many new players pick a bat that’s either too big or too small. “Unfortunately, most young players have no idea and if it’s the parents who are asking, they usually don’t know either.”

With the season fast approaching, we sat down with Trudeau to get some tips on how to avoid this mistake and find the bat size that’s right for you.

Trudeau said one of the first things to do is to understand your body type and be realistic about your abilities.

“A lot of times, a kid will end up swinging a bat that’s too heavy because his buddy sitting next to him in the dugout — who is the same size — swings a bigger bat and just hit a home run with it,” Trudeau said. “All of a sudden, now he’ll feel like he could hit a home run if he went to a heavier bat.”

Each player, like every swing, is a little bit different. With that in mind, the most reliable and easiest place to start in determining bat length, according to Trudeau, is to place the knob of the bat in the center of your chest and extend it along the length of your outstretched arm, as shown below.

“The bat should come somewhere out to the middle of the fingers,” he said. “You should be able to just curl your last knuckles right to the end cap of the bat.”

The wingspan method for determining bat length.

Players can determine their appropriate bat length by placing the knob of the bat in the middle of their chest; a correctly sized bat should stretch nearly to their fingertips.

If you’re between lengths and don’t know which to choose, it’s usually best to pick the shorter (and lighter) bat for better bat speed and control, Trudeau said.

“More often than not, a kid that’s swinging a bat that’s too heavy creates more bad habits than good,” he said.

Age can be another general way to determine the correct bat length — i.e., the younger the player, the shorter the bat. Players commonly fall into the below categories.

The age method for determining bat length.

A player’s age can often help determine an appropriate bat length, with younger players swinging shorter bats.

Once you’ve found the correct length, finding the right weight is largely a matter of strength and what you are comfortable and capable of swinging. The bat industry dictates this to an extent. Most youth bats, for example, have “drop” weights — the difference between the length of a bat in inches and its weight in ounces — between -11 and -13. So a youth baseball bat, such as Baden’s flagship Axe Avenge L142C, with a drop weight of -11, would weigh 19 ounces at a length of 30 inches.

High school and college players are required to swing BBCOR-compliant bats with drop weights of -3. Consequently, Trudeau said younger players would be wise to decrease the length-to-weight ratio of their bats as they grow stronger in preparation. But he also cautioned not to rush that process.

“Your goal each year should be to get stronger, get more efficient and build a more consistent and repeatable swing,” he said. “As that happens, it will automatically create opportunities for you to swing a longer, heavier bat.”

Using these simple guidelines should help point you in the right direction and avoid making one of the most common mistakes of the preseason.

 

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59 Comments

  1. 33″ would be my bat size.

  2. My son is twelve and loves baseball. Would love to win an Axe bat……

    • His bat size is 31 inches and 19 ounces. Fingers crossed. Thanks. Ben

    • 31 28.

    • My bat size is 32″ and I’m 14. I would love a new bat. My is too small.

  3. My son would need a 29″ bat after reading this article.

  4. 33inches 22ounces

  5. Thanks for the info. According to this, I purchased a bat too long for my son. Thanks, associate at dicks and dicks size suggestions. Also, was disappointed to find out that they don’t carry Axe in store.

    • Ooops, forgot to add this 28 drop 12

  6. 30/19

  7. 31-18 youth league for my 11yr old been trying to find axe bats near bye even talked with axe reps nothing close would love for him to try one out this season

    • I’m sorry you’ve had trouble finding a local demo. One option you might consider — if you don’t win this giveaway — is our 30-day performance guarantee. We’re offering that on any of our 2015 bats purchased on http://www.axebat.com. If your son isn’t 100% satisfied with the bat after 30 days, we’ll buy it back. You can find more information about that here: http://axebat.com/pages/30-day-guarantee.

  8. Based on this information my kid would need a 25″ bat. Good article.

  9. My son swings a 29″ bat (-11)

  10. 32″

  11. 31-32 inches and 20 ounces, I would love one, my bat now is too small and light, and I don’t have the money to buy myself a new great bat like axe.

  12. My bat would be a 32 inch drop 3. Would love to win

  13. 33″. 21 oz

  14. 32″ , 29 oz

  15. 33in 30oz or a 34in 31oz please I need a new bat but don’t have the money

  16. 33″ 30 ounce

  17. My son would swing a 28″ bat. My son has gone from playing in miracle/challenger leagues(high functioning autism)to playing his first season in traditional Little League, the issue right now is getting his hands set right. We recently tried your bat at our local cages and the axe handle shape helped tremendously in aligning and setting his hands together.

    • Thanks for the great feedback. We find a lot of coaches and players find similar advantages with the Axe Bat when it comes to grip and hand position. Glad to hear your son is doing well. Best of luck to him this season.

  18. Hey,I’m 13 years old and baseball is my passion I think the new axe bat is a break threw in baseball and would love a bat for my self

  19. 33in 30oz bbcor please

  20. So interesting!! Im 31 yrs old and never knew the chest to fingertip ratio! I guess you learn something new everyday!! I’m a 33′,30oz .

  21. 33″-30oz

  22. 33-30 bbcor

  23. My son is a 28 inch.

  24. My daughter is a 30/18

  25. 31in drop3 high school baseball looking forward to win a bat and have my own 🙂 thanks axe bat

  26. 29″

  27. 30 inches & 19 oz for my daughter.

  28. My bat size would be 33-30 BBCOR

  29. 34/25 🙂 my collegiate career may be over now, but my coaching career just started 🙂

  30. After reading this article my son need a 29″ Bat.
    He is 10 years old.

  31. My daughter size is 20oz and 31 inches long.

  32. My daughter liked her 32″ 22oz AXE

  33. Thanks for the read, I like the middle chest to finger tips reference. My daughter figures to be a 31″/20 oz. and we would love to win it.

  34. 33/30 BBCOR and 33 Wood

  35. need a -5 32/27 would be awesome.

  36. 32in 29oz, good article, would really like to own one, just don’t have the money.

  37. 33-34

  38. First year BBCOR 31-28. Swung 26 oz axe for a year and loved it!

  39. 31/28 drop 3 Thanks!!!

  40. 31/28 bbcor
    Thanks!!!!!!

  41. Reduced fatigue, comfort and better hand position are what my son likes about his Axe. He is ready for a larger one though! Thanks. 32-29

  42. My 5 year old daughter’s bat size is a 25”…looking for her first bat !!

  43. My bat size would be 33″-34″! They look slick and powerful! Would really help improve my swing.

  44. I like the “wing span” method you demonstrate here, and the age breakdowns look good :). As an adult in baseball I like to have 2 bats at each game with me, some days it just feels like the bat speed is not there… so I’ll use a 32″ but most days I like the 33″.

  45. 32/22 softball

  46. Very informative article. All the years I have been involved with youth softball and never known that information. Wish I had that info when I got my daughter her 1st Axe bat. Looks like her appropriate bat size would be a 31.

  47. I play softball. I’m 14 and have sadly out grown my bat. I would love a new bat.

  48. My son has been playing sports since kindergarten and loves each and every one of them but none more than baseball. He recently turned 13 and will begin his Spring season playing on a 60-90 field. He is a 31″ drop 3. PLAY BALL!!!

  49. Thank you so much for the information on getting the right size bat. After much money spent on bats that were either too big or too small, my son could definitely use a free Axe bat! Going by the sizing recommendations, he would need a 28″ drop 13.

  50. My boy played high school baseball 33 -3 bat size would live to try he is a incoming JR

  51. 33-30