The Easy Buying Guide for Baseballs and Bats

With all the choices out there these days, deciding which baseballs and bats to buy can be an overwhelming task. Keep reading to learn everything you need to know about these two very important pieces of baseball equipment 9nine Sports.

Baseballs

Ever wonder what’s inside a baseball and what makes one baseball better than another? You’re not alone. To answer that question, you must become familiar with the four essential parts of a baseball:

Baseball Covers

There two types of baseball covers: leather and synthetic. Leather covers are the “traditional” choice and are used at higher levels of play. They offer a better grip and are generally more expensive. Synthetic covers are made from vinyl and are more resistant to water, dirt, and stains. Baseballs with synthetic covers are less costly than leather baseballs.

Baseball Stitching

There are three main forms of baseball stitching. The first form is raised seams. This type of stitching is prominently raised and can benefit pitchers as the raised seams lead to greater ball movement. The second form is standard seams. This type of stitching is not as pronounced as the raised seams. It is also called “major league stitching” because it is the type of stitching used in the major leagues. The third form is flat seams. Flat seams are used for pitching machines or practices and are rarely used in games.

Baseball Windings

The baseball windings are found under the cover and are made of yarn and thread. The yarn is either made of pure wool or wool blends. Pure wool windings are offer the best compression and shape retention. Wool blend windings are more common. The wool purity and the tightness of the thread determine the quality of the windings.

Baseball Cores

The core of the baseball is found in the middle of the baseball windings. High quality baseballs have cushioned cork cores that consist of cork wrapped in rubber. Lower quality baseball cores are made of solid rubber or a cork and rubber composite.

Bats

Baseball bats are a hitter’s tool and must be chosen carefully. There are three primary types of bats to choose from: aluminum or aluminum alloys, composite, and wood.

Aluminum or Aluminum Alloy Bats

Aluminum or aluminum alloy bats have been the primary choice for most youth leagues for many years. Aluminum bats are light and durable. There are many different alloys or combinations of metals that are used in aluminum bats, each having their own unique set of properties. The most common alloy is 7046 but there are others that give the bat more durability and strength, such as CU31/7050, C405/7055, and C555. You can expect to pay slightly more for these stronger alloys.