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Aluminum Bats: Turning Baseball Suspects into Prospects Since 1974

Published by on November 13, 2011

Whether aluminum or wood, a bat can make all the difference. It has for college baseball players since the first aluminum bats were introduced in 1974.

Professional coaches commonly refer to players as either "prospects" or "suspects"—there is nothing in between.

As I stood behind a batting cage in 1999, watching rookie professional baseball players take their first rounds of batting practice, the frustration was overwhelming.

Players who had been "sluggers" in college—hitting 15-20 home runs per year, crushing balls 400 feet and driving in scores of runs—were reduced to can-of-corn fly balls and warning track long outs.

Most were left holding a shattered bat in their hands. They walked out of the cage muttering and frustrated. They quickly learned that they could no longer pull a pitch thrown in on their hands. That is the effect an aluminum bat can have on a player.

Aluminum bats were originally adopted by college baseball as a cost-saving measure to replace expensive wood bats. The extra runs and excitement they added were also pluses for the college game.

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Read Complete Article at Bleacher Report - College Baseball
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