2020 Bat Rule Change

On Sunday, November 3, 2019 at the Semi-Annual General Meeting in Brandon the Board of Director’s of Baseball Manitoba Ratified a Motion that will allow the use of BBCOR Certified Metal Bats at 15U AAA and 18U (all categories, A, AA and AAA) in competition in 2020. The 15U A and AA Levels will continue to be played with metal BBCOR bats.

Rationale:

  • Many players between the ages of 14-18 are not physically mature enough to properly handle a wood bat, causing a decrease in success, confidence and overall development.
  • These players, who are not physically mature enough to handle a wood bat develop bad habits and a defensive mindset at the plate with a wood bat, resulting in poor, weak swings to make contact and avoid getting sore hands or breaking the bat.
  • These new metal bats are controlled to react much like a wood bat, making player safety a significant priority.
  • Metal bats have a larger “sweet spot’ increasing players success and confidence.
  • Metal bats do not break, reducing the cost to players and families and giving teams and associations the option to return to using team bats.
  • Players swinging with more success become more confident and produce good habits by promoting aggressive swings, without fear of bats breaking or hurting their hands.
  • Hitting in baseball is the most exciting part of the game, it is what most players look forward to the most. It is also the most difficult part of the game, where failure is already at a very high level for young players.
  • Elite players from Manitoba graduate into college programs, where metal bats are used. We do not graduate players into Professional programs where wood bats are used.
  • Many Provincial Team Coaches and Player Development Personnel in Manitoba believe that allowing these players to use metal bats will improve the overall game at this level by putting more well hit baseballs in play, forcing pitchers to pitch better; hit spots, learn off-speed pitches and execute pitches more effectively and fielders to be prepared for more hard hit balls on a regular basis.

Important Notes:

  • Baseball Manitoba believes that Wood bats should still be used as a training aid and/or in competition, if the batter’s skill level allows.
  • Baseball Manitoba’s 15U, 16U and 17U Male Provincial Team Programs will continue to promote the use of Wood bats, as the National and WCBA events will be played with wood bats and these players are striving to compete for Baseball Canada’s National Team.

Changes to our Handbook:

In the Pink section of the Handbook, page 117 regarding “Bat Type” will be updated to the following:

Category

9U

11U

13U

15U

18U

Bat Type

Metal or Wood

Metal or Wood

Metal or Wood

Metal (BBCOR)

or Wood

*Female Players May Swing Metal (non BBCOR)

Metal (BBCOR)

or Wood

*Female Players May Swing Metal (non BBCOR)

Max. Bat Length

32 in.

32 in.

33 in.

42 in.

42 in.

Max. Bat Diameter

2¾ in.

2¾ in.

2¾ in.

2¾ in.

2¾ in.

Bat Weight to Length Ratio

N/A

N/A

Metal

(-10)

---------

Wood

(N/A)

Metal (BBCOR)

(-3)

------------------

Wood

(N/A)

---------------------

Metal

(-5)

*Female Only

Metal (BBCOR)

(-3)

------------------

Wood

(N/A)

-------------------

Metal

(-5)

*Female Only

 


The Following Information is a useful explanation of BBCOR from justbats.com website.

What is the BBCOR Certification?

BBCOR (Bat-Ball Coefficient of Restitution) is something you've probably heard a lot about; it's the standard currently governing adult baseball bats used in High School and Collegiate play. Rather than measuring the ratio of the ball exit speed to pitch and bat speeds, BBCOR measures the trampoline effect of the bat. In the past, when a pitched ball contacted an alloy or composite bat, the barrel would flex inward ever so slightly, and the ball would retain some of its energy resulting in further hits. Wood baseball bats don't have as much "give" to them, and the ball loses much of its energy upon impact. The BBCOR standard ensures that non-wood bats perform more comparably to wood bats to level the playing field and improve player safety.

All BBCOR baseball bats will carry the "BBCOR Certified .50" mark (pictured above) somewhere on their barrel or taper. Additional requirements for a bat to become BBCOR Certified include a length to weight ratio that is no greater than -3 and a barrel diameter that does not exceed 2”. So, the answer to the very common question "Where can I find a BBCOR bat that has a -5 length to weight ratio?" is that "Those regrettably do not exist. All BBCOR bats are required to be -3 or heavier". As a result of being a standardized drop weight, the main difference with these models is their swing weights. The swing weight is how heavy the bat "feels" when swung. A bat with more of the weight towards the end is referred to as an "end-loaded" bat and will be geared towards power hitters. A bat with a more traditional construction will be referred to as "balanced" and generally will be used by contact hitters.