Baseball

Bat Sizing

Bat Chart*

Success at the plate often comes down to this: making consistent hard contact against live pitching. To do this, it’s important to swing the right bat for you. That means a bat that’s long enough to cover the strike zone, light enough to swing with ease, heavy enough to generate power, and, of course, permitted in your league. In order to find the ideal size for you, consider the following guidelines:

Weight Height
3'-3'4" 3'5"-3'8" 3'9"-4' 4'1"-4'4" 4'5"-4'8" 4'9"-5' 5'1"-5'4" 5'5"-5'8" 5'9"-6' 6'1"-Over
Under 60 Lbs. 26" 27" 28" 29" 29"
61 - 70 27" 27" 28" 29" 30" 30"
71 - 80 28" 28" 29" 30" 30" 31"
81 - 90 28" 29" 29" 30" 30" 31" 32"
91 - 100 28" 29" 30" 30" 31" 31" 32"
101 - 110 29" 29" 30" 30" 31" 31" 32"
111 - 120 29" 29" 30" 30" 31" 31" 32"
121 - 130 29" 30" 30" 30" 31" 32" 33" 33"
131 - 140 29" 30" 30" 31" 31" 32" 33" 33"
141 - 150 30" 30" 31" 31" 32" 33" 33"
151 - 160 30" 31" 31" 32" 32" 33" 33" 33"
161 - 170 31" 31" 32" 32" 33" 33" 34"
171 - 180 32" 33" 33" 34" 34"
Over 180 33" 33" 34" 34"
MOST POPULAR LENGTH BY AGE
AGE 5 - 7 8 - 9 10 11 - 12 13 - 14 15 - 16
LENGTH 24" - 26" 26" - 28" 28" - 29" 30" - 31" 31" - 32" 32" - 33"

Length

Bat length is measured in inches from knob to end cap. A longer bat gives you greater reach, allowing you to hit balls on the outside part of the plate. However, longer bats also tend to have more mass towards the end of the bat that requires more power to swing them. We recommend swinging bats of different lengths to decide what option best suits your swing. The right combination of length and weight will help you reach your peak performance. Read More ...

Weight**

Bat weight is measured in ounces (oz.). A bat’s weight is often tied to its “weight drop” -- its length in inches versus its weight in ounces. For instance, a 32-inch, 22-ounce bat would be referred to as a -10 bat. Read More ...

SHOP BY WEIGHT DROP

*This is for example purposes only. The best way to find the right size bat for you is to demo the bat, preferably against live pitch speeds.
**Manufacturing tolerances, performance considerations and grip weight may cause variations from the listed weight.

Leagues

GOVERNING BODIES

Governing bodies (for example, the USSSA and USA Baseball) set unique standards for bat performance. Bat manufacturers make bats to meet these standards. Each standard, however, is different. So, bats meeting one standard may not meet another. Bats are marked with logos identifying the standard which they meet.

Leagues adopt the standard they deem appropriate for play under their particular rules. League adoptions vary region by region, so we highly recommend consulting your coach and/or league official to understand the standard adopted by your league prior to purchasing a new bat.

The following information will help you understand in the standard adopted by your league.

Select your governing body or league*:
*Regulations for each league are subject to change. In order to have the most up-to-date information, please contact your coach or league official.

BBCOR

College and High School Baseball

  • -3 Drop Weight
  • Barrel Diameter 2 58” or less

USSSA

Senior League Baseball

  • Wide Weight Drop Range
  • Wide Barrel Range Diameter

USA BASEBALL

USABat Standard

  • No Weight Restriction
  • Maximum Barrel Diameter of 2 58

BBCOR

BBCOR

College and High School Baseball

  • Maximum drop weight of -3
  • Maximum barrel diameter of 2 58
  • Most wood bats are allowed under BBCOR rules

There are multiple ways to recognize a BBCOR bat. The easiest way is to look for the BBCOR certification stamp where the handle meets the barrel. Another way to identify a BBCOR Louisville Slugger bat are the knob and the packaging sticker, both of which are blue.

Wood bats are also legal for BBCOR play and do not need the BBCOR mark. Wood composite bats on the other hand do need the BBCOR mark to be legal for play.

Not all -3 BBCOR bats feel the same. Often, a line of BBCOR bats is made with varying swing weights, from light-swinging to balanced to end-loaded. The swing weight is influenced by how the bat’s weight is distributed. End-loaded bats have more weight toward the end cap, more and have a relatively higher swing weight for that reason. More balanced bats have their weight distributed more evenly and have a relatively lower swing weight for that reason. For more information on end-loaded and balanced bats, please see the Bat Tech section.

SHOP BBCOR BATS

USSSA

USSSA

USSSA - United States Sports Specialty Association

USSSA (United States Sports Specialty Association) is one of the largest baseball associations in the United States. USSSA separates their regulations by age group, with a range of permitted weight drops and barrel diameters. In order to find the most accurate information about what can be used in your USSSA league, we recommend contacting your coach and/or league official, or checking the USSSA website.

Ways to recognize bats certified for USSSA play include the USSSA logo on the taper of the bat, and the red knob and packaging sticker.

Weight drops vary in Senior League baseball, but players 10 years old and under often use -10 weight drop bat. Players 12 years old and under often use a -8 weight drop, and 13 year old players often use a -5 weight drop.**

**These are recommendations. Check with your coach/league official to find out what your league rules allow.

SHOP USSSA SENIOR LEAGUE BATS

USA BASEBALL

USA BASEBALL

Youth Baseball

Effective January 1st, 2018, USA Baseball will adopt a new bat standard for youth baseball bats. All players participating in leagues that have adopted the USA Baseball bat standard will be required to use a USA Baseball-certified bat (a “USABat(s)” Standard). On January 1, only bats that have the USA Baseball mark will be legal for play in these leagues.

Louisville Slugger bats that pass the USA Bat certification will have these marks:


The following national member organizations will be adopting the USA Baseball bat standard beginning January 1, 2018:

Louisville Slugger USABat FAQ

What’s different about the new USA Baseball bat standard and how do the bats differ?

USABats can have barrels up to 2 58” diameter and do not have weight drop restrictions.

USABats are marked with a new USA baseball logo located just above the grip on a bat.

What does the USA Baseball bat standard replace?*

It replaces the standards previously adopted by the member organizations: American Amateur Baseball Congress (AABC), Babe Ruth Baseball/Cal Ripken Baseball, Dixie Youth Baseball & Dixie Boys Baseball, Little League Baseball and PONY Baseball.

When does the new USA Baseball bat standard go into effect?

Bats with the new USA Baseball approval stamp were made available for purchase on September 1, 2017. Players participating in leagues adopting the new USA Baseball bat standard must use approved bats beginning on January 1, 2018. Check with your league to see if they are adopting the new USA Baseball bat standard.

How do I know if my bat is allowed?

USABats will have the USA Baseball mark shown below on the area between the bat’s barrel and grip. We always recommend that you check with our local league to see if your bat is approved.

To help you find these bats in store - all Louisville Slugger bats will have a green knob medallion and a green sticker identifying it as USA Baseball approved.

I just bought an older, non-USABat, can I return it?

We recommend you work directly with the retailer where the bat was purchased. For bats purchased on www.slugger.com please see our warranty policy.

What bat sizes are allowed?

USA Baseball bat standards has no restrictions in weight drop. In addition, bats with a 2 14” and 2 58” barrel diameter are approved under the USA Baseball bat standard.

Are there any material restrictions?

USA Baseball approved bats can be composite, alloy, wood or a combination of these materials.

Can I use a wood bat in leagues adopting the USA Baseball bat standard?

Yes; provided the wood bat bears a USA Baseball mark. Please check with your coach/league official to find out what wood bats are approved in your league.

What leagues are using this standard?

TThe following leagues will have adopted the USA Baseball bat standard; American Amateur Baseball Congress (AABC), Babe Ruth Baseball/Cal Ripken Baseball, Dixie Youth Baseball & Dixie Boys Baseball, Little League Baseball and PONY Baseball. *Note: Any league can adopt the USA Baseball bat standard. So, we recommend checking with your local league before purchasing a bat.

What about tee ball?

The new USA Baseball bat standard also covers tee ball bats. As of January 1, 2018, a tee ball bat will only be permitted for play in leagues that have adopted the USABat Standard, if the bat (1) bears the USA Baseball mark and (2) is used only with USA Baseball-approved tee balls.

Tee ball bats are not required to undergo lab testing to be approved under the USA Baseball bat standard – but they must bear the new USA Baseball mark on the bat.

Are fastpitch softball bats covered by the USA Baseball bat standard?

No – The USA Baseball bat standard only applies to youth baseball that plays under USA baseball rules.

What Louisville Slugger bats are USA Baseball-certified?

Louisville Slugger has multiple bats available in a variety of swing weights, lengths, and materials. You can check them out here: USA Bat page on slugger.com

*In order to have the most up-to-date information or if you have specific questions about your league, please contact your coach and/or league official.

SHOP USA BATS

BAT TECHNOLOGY

A bat is more than just a hunk of metal or wood. It is a carefully-engineered tool that allows players to get the most out of every swing. Every component of the bat, from the knob to the end cap, is designed to maximize every ounce of performance. There are four main tech components you need to know for your bat: material, barrel diameter, construction and weight balance.

Material

One of the biggest influences on bat performance is its material. Bats are made of metal, composites, or wood. Metal and composite bats are typically made of composite or alloy material, and are traditionally used for youth baseball through college baseball. Wood, meanwhile, is used throughout the professional levels, as well as for specific amateur and travel ball leagues/organizations. Please read below to learn more about bat materials and how they affect performance.

Composite Vs. Alloy

Non-wood bats are built from either alloy, composite, or a combination of the two.

Composite

Composite bats are made with a layered material (often carbon fiber) that is easy to distribute, giving us the ability to make bats with a variety of swing weights, from balanced to end-loaded.

Pros of Composite:

  • Minimize the sting from a mis-hit ball by reducing vibration to the hands

  • Often have a larger sweet spot than alloy bats

Alloy

Alloy is a mixture of two or more metals, and has been commonly used in baseball bats for years.

Pros of Alloy:

  • Stiffer feel through the swing zone

  • More durable material


Construction

One-piece bats are one complete piece of composite or alloy and are often used by power hitters, since they provide less flex on contact.

Multi-piece bats are comprised of two separate parts: the barrel and the handle. The handle is connected to the barrel through a transition piece in the taper area of the bat. Multi-piece construction helps minimize vibration on mis-hit balls. Those bats are preferred by contact hitters, since the two-part construction helps generate maximum swing speed without the fear of major sting on contact.


Swing Weight

A factor you may not see, but will definitely feel is the swing weight* of your bat. Bats are often segmented by their given length and weight. The Swing weight is a determination of how a bat’s particular weight is distributed along the bat’s length. For example, you can have two bats that are 30 ounces, but that have different swing weights because the 30 ounces are distributed differently in the bat. Bats can fall along the swing weight spectrum, from light to balanced to end-loaded.

End-loaded bats shift extra weight toward the end of the barrel, creating more whip-like action on a player’s swing and generating more power.

Balanced bats have a more even weight distribution, allowing for potentially greater swing speed for many hitters. This is preferred by contact hitters who want more control of their swing.

*Note - there are a variety of swing weights offered to meet player needs.

Barrel Diameter

The barrel is the thickest and widest part of the bat used to hit the ball. The barrel is where you want to hit the ball in order to achieve maximum performance.

Barrels come in different sizes, and are measured by diameter. Barrel diameter is measured in inches and, like weight drop, certain leagues limit the size of a bat’s barrel. Please refer to the Leagues to check your league’s requirements. Generally, these are the most common barrel diameters:

  • 34 inches
  • 58 inches
  • 14 inches

There are three main types of wood bats that players use

Ash

Still widely popular among big leaguers, Ash provides the ultimate in flexibility due to its unique grain structure. More forgiving than Maple, Ash rarely sees multi-piece fractures when the bat breaks. Visible grain lines allow for noticeable quality, giving you the confidence you need when you step up to the plate.

Maple

The species preferred by most pro players, Maple features the ultimate surface hardness and provides an unmatched sound and feel at contact. Naturally harder, Maple offers added strength at impact. Closed grains eliminate flaking commonly seen with Ash, allowing for superior durability.

Birch

The fastest growing species in professional baseball, Birch features the ideal combination of surface hardness and flexibility for increased durability. Its hardness (similar to Maple) provides great sound and feel at contact. Flexibility similar to Ash allows for forgiveness on non-barrel contact, decreasing the chance of multi-piece fractured breakage. Birch is less dense than maple, giving it a lighter feel on comparable turning models.

*Wood bats are more likely to break or crack on mishits than Alloy and Composite bats.

Construction

These are the types of finishes on a bat. A finish is the combination of the color and “look” of the bat. On top of the finish a hard coat is applied to make the bat’s surface even harder. On the top of the line MLB Prime wood bats, Louisville Slugger uses Exo Armour Premium Hardcoat which makes the bat twice as hard.

FINISH

These are the types of finishes on a bat. A finish is the combination of the color and “look” of the bat. On top of the finish a hard coat is applied to make the bat’s surface even harder. On the top of the line MLB Prime wood bats, Louisville Slugger uses Exo Armour Premium Hardcoat which makes the bat twice as hard.

GLOSS

MATTE

DISTRESSED

KNOB STYLE - ROUND KNOB VS. FLARE KNOB

Not all knobs are the same. Some bats have a more rounded knob while others feature a more gradual flare. The choice between the two simply comes down to personal preference.

INK DOT

An ink dot on a bat certifies that the wood is MLB grade. Often MLB-quality wood bats are bone-rubbed, which is the process of making a bat denser by compressing the wood.

CUPPED VS. NON-CUPPED

Cupping a bat is the process in which the end of the barrel is hollowed out to remove weight while maintaining length. This process creates a slightly more balanced feel to your swing and is especially effective on larger-barrel bats for increased swing speed.

TURNING MODEL

The turning model refers to the specific shape of the bat. Different turning models have different specifications. Here are the areas where turning models differ:

  • Barrel Measurement: is the diameter in the largest part of the barrel.
  • Barrel taper: indicates whether the bat has a short dramatic transition through the taper, or long transition through the taper.
  • Handle thickness: measures the diameter of the handle.
  • Knob taper: identifies what kind of taper exists for that turning model. Here are the three types.
    • No taper: handle comes straight into the knob with no flare.
    • Traditional taper: a gradual flare to the handle as it reaches the knob.
    • Max taper: an aggressive flare to the handle as it joins the knob for a wider feel in your bottom hand.

SHOP WOOD BATS

SHOP COMPOSITE/ALLOY BATS