I have just received a new email from Little League International addressing the question of non-wood bats which are available on the market and are stamped as “Little League Approved” but do not carry a corresponding Bat Performance Factor (BPF) which assures the ball leaves the non-wood bat at a comparable speed to a wood bat. (For more information on this subject see my previous article From the Clubhouse titled “The Great Baseball Bat Debate”) As this email is authorized by Little League International for redistribution, I have reproduced it here in its entirety (with emphases added) for interested readers. The bottom line is this: check your bat bag and look before you pay out big money for a new pre-season bat purchase. There is nothing more frustrating than paying more than $100 for a new bat and then being told you can’t use it after only 1 season!
March 18, 2009
It has been brought to the attention of Little League officials that there are a few bats for sale in stores or that may have already been purchased that carry the Little League approval, but do not have the required bat performance standard markings. The Little League Rulebook states that beginning January 1, 2009, all non-wood bats used for play in Little League Baseball (majors and below) shall be printed with a bat performance factor (BPF) of 1.15 or less. While the bats we have identified pass the BPF standard and other standards of proportion and measurement, they do not have the proper label. These bats are in the marketplace for a variety of circumstances. After review by Little League officials, it has been determined that these bats may remain in the marketplace and shall be allowed for play during the 2009 season only, with the understanding that these bats shall not be allowed for play after December 21, 2009, even though some improperly labeled bats may still remain in the marketplace, or retained by leagues and players after the 2010 deadline. Also check the model you are purchasing. If these bats, like the Vanquish, are replaced with correct labeling, and have the BPF 1.15 label, they will be allowed after 2009.
Specifically, the bats in question are as follows:
- Adidas Vanquish Blue design: (There is a newer model of this bat, also named the Vanquish and it has copper and black markings. It contains the proper labeling and therefore is not subject to the one-year rule).
- DeMarini: Black Coyote, Rogue, Distance, Rumble, Tengu
- Easton: LZ-810
- Louisville Slugger: YB31
Little League International
P.O. Box 3485
539 US Route 15 Hwy
Williamsport, PA 17701-0485