Seems there's a new alternative to the current bat that major leaguers are shattering at such scary and dangerous rates. It's also an alternative to the trampoline-effect producing aluminum bats that the kids/collegians are using.
It is made from 12 wedges that are combined with adhesive and clamping pressure. The result is that the outside of each wedge has a tight grain surface, guaranteeing the best hitting surface at every spot on the bat.
"The result is that it is very strong, and as a result of it being strong it is very safe," [The inventor, Ward] Dill said. "It is impossible for this maple bat to shatter in the way the maple bats shatter in the major leagues today. You will never have a barrel separating from the handle. The worst thing that can happen is a crack. There is a never a catastrophic break."
There is also no trampoline effect, Dill said. The ball does not jump off the bat.
"All the normal things that happen with bats will happen with this bat," Dill said. "If you hit a ball on the sweet spot of this bat and the sweet spot of a traditional bat, the ball will go equally far."
One thing seemed contradictory, though (emphasis mine):
[Ed Koeffling of Pennsville, a Montclair State University outfielder] said the bat has less jump than an aluminum bat, but more than a conventional wooden bat.
So, which is it, more jump than a wooden bat or the ball will go equally far if hit squarely?
Regardless of the answer, I'm encouraged to see something that might erradicate the recent shattering of bats that puts fans and players in harm's way.
There's an issue of costs, particularly for municipalities, as the bats (kids models) will cost between $100-$120 each (with a 1 year warranty on all). But the local politician in attendence had this to say:
"I can't put a price on the safety of the children," said Montclair Councilman Rick Murnick, who attended news conference with his son. "I don't know the particulars of what it costs. If it works, we'll find a way to make it work in Montclair."