Picking the best baseball bat is more of an art than a science

Baseball folklore is full of tales about players’ peculiar relationships with their bats. There’s the famous fictional power hitter who topped his bats with golf-club covers to keep them warm, and a real-life major leaguer who would sleep with his bats in hopes he’d have a great day at the plate.

But when it comes time for kids to step up to the plate, exactly what size and type of bats they should carry with them can be a confusing issue.

At Todd & Moore, we’ve helped generations of Dixie Baseball and Little League players pick out the right bats. We’ve helped them at every stage of the game, from tee ball to high school. In fact, that’s one of the things we love best about being your locally owned, hometown sporting goods store. We get to see players go from barely knowing which end of the bat to hold to polished All Star sluggers.

Though there are some guidelines for selecting bats, there’s no magical mathematical formula. For experienced players, it all comes down to what feels good.

We’ll give players everything they need to figure that out. There’s plenty of room for players to take a few or a few dozen practice swings. Our expert staff always is on stand-by to watch, evaluate and advise. We want players to leave our store confident in their bat and in their game. We’ll do everything we can to make that happen.

Todd & Moore takes the mystery about of bat selection

In general, bat size is based on the baseball or softball player’s height and weight. There are charts all over the Internet that will give you a quick calculator. Unfortunately, those quick calculations often are wrong. The chart might recommend a 29-inch bat, but if the hitter can’t cover the plate with it, the length isn’t going to be the best pick.

Bat weight is an even trickier issue, particularly once players get beyond coaches pitch. In general, players are going to want bats with drops between -10 and -13. The drop is the difference between the bat’s length and weight. A 29-inch, 19 ounce is a drop -10, while a 29-inch, 18 ounce is a drop -13.

Which is “better”? It comes down to preference. It’s easier to generate bat speed, which means greater hitting distance for smaller players, with a light bat. Larger kids might prefer something a little heavier to maximize their power.

Length and weight are only two of the factors involved in picking a bat. There’s also barrel size, taper, grip and, most importantly, league regulations.

Stop by Todd & Moore and talk in person. The best way to pick a bat, after all, is to actually swing it.