As hitters, we will usually assess and deal with an space of weak spot in our swing. Nonetheless, we not often carry out an analogous evaluation on our gear to see whether it is both enhancing our swing or amplifying our swing flaws. As of proper now, many people select our bat based mostly on what “feels” the very best.
If we get a little bit scientific, we will start to develop a speculation as to what bat would possibly finest swimsuit our distinctive swing traits. It’s potential that the proper bat may positively affect our batted ball statistics. Given how tough hitting is, it’s price investigating something that can provide us a lift within the field.
If I’m a university or highschool athlete, will each 33in 30oz bat I decide up be the very same? After all not. We are going to focus totally on the distinction in every bat’s “Second of Inertia”, or MOI.
Second of Inertia: A amount expressing a physique’s tendency to withstand angular acceleration.
This can be a measurement of how tough it’s to alter the rotational velocity of an object that’s rotating round a “pivot level”. In baseball, the trade commonplace for measuring MOI begins with a pivot level six inches above the knob. Six inches is important as a result of that is roughly the place most hitters’ grips will finish.
A bat’s MOI will inform us the place the vast majority of the load is located on the bat. The 2 overload Axe Bat Speed Trainers are an ideal instance for this.
In case you had been to place a 33 inch model of each the barrel-loaded and handle-loaded bat velocity trainers on a scale, they’d each show the identical weight: 36 oz. Upon selecting up and swinging every bat, nevertheless, you’d rapidly discover that swinging the barrel load is far more tough than swinging the deal with load. The reason being that these bats have very totally different MOI values.
As weight is distributed in the direction of the tip cap of a bat, the MOI goes up. If weight is distributed down in the direction of the deal with, the MOI goes down. This implies it should require a lot much less pressure to rotate a bat with a decrease MOI round a pivot level.
That may make quick sense to you, however should you’d wish to get a really feel for it, seize a bat and take two swings, one together with your arms within the normal place on the grip and the opposite holding the barrel. Which required extra effort?
How will totally different bats have an effect on my swing?
Now we have to reply the query, “How would possibly the distinction in MOIs have an effect on my swing or outcomes?” In case you’ve ever swung the Axe Bat Velocity Trainers, I’m positive you’ve seen the variations between the 2. The barrel-loaded coach requires extra pressure, making it far more tough to rotate, leading to slower bat speeds. Moreover, the upper MOI makes the barrel load harder to govern and modify.
On the handle-loaded bat velocity coach, the additional weight is nearer to the physique’s midline. This weight distribution is in a way more adjustable place, which permits us to rotate the bat at higher velocities.
Determine skaters are an ideal instance of this idea. In case you’ve ever seen a determine skater spinning on the ice, they carry their limbs tighter right into a extra proximal place (near the physique) with a purpose to spin sooner.
When making an attempt to decelerate their spin, they transfer their limbs from a proximal to a distal (away from the physique) place, shifting the load farther from their midline. This similar concept holds true for MOI within the bats we determined to make use of: the nearer the load is to the physique, the simpler it is going to be to swing the bat sooner.
Assuming the idea above, utilizing a bat with a decrease MOI will let you rotate the bat sooner, enhance your bat velocity, and reduce your time to contact, letting you make selections later within the swing. A decrease MOI bat can even produce elevated bat to ball abilities (smash issue). As a result of that weight is nearer to the arms, we should always be capable of modify and manipulate the bat a lot simpler.
The other is true for a bat with the next MOI. As a result of the load is additional away from the arms, it’s now able that makes it harder to rotate the barrel at sooner velocities, in flip reducing bat velocity. This end-loaded weight distribution additionally makes it harder to govern the barrel and modify through the swing.
Nonetheless, the truth that you’ll be able to swing a bat with a decrease MOI sooner than a bat with the next MOI doesn’t imply you may be hitting the ball more durable.
Let’s take into account Newton’s 2nd legislation: “Drive equals mass occasions acceleration” (F=ma). Eradicating mass from the barrel will lower a bat’s MOI and enhance bat velocity (acceleration). Nonetheless, the lack of mass has a big impact of its personal, usually leading to much less pressure being transferred from the bat into the ball, and in the end decrease exit velocities. To simplify, with a purpose to reap the benefits of the exit velocity advantages from including bat velocity to your swing, you would wish to make these bat velocity positive aspects whereas swinging a bat with the identical or comparable MOI.
The Way forward for Bat Becoming
One begins to surprise if baseball will ultimately follow golf’s lead so far as “becoming” the athlete with gear based mostly on their distinctive swing traits. Think about an athlete with an abnormally excessive whiff price, however excessive peak exit velocity. This athlete is greater than doubtless utilizing a bat with a comparatively excessive MOI. The upper MOI makes it harder to regulate through the swing, which may contribute to the excessive whiff price.
That stated, when the barrel does meet the ball, the place of mass within the barrel leads to impressively excessive exit velocity. In principle, switching to a bat with a decrease MOI may lower this athlete’s whiff price and enhance their barrel share. Nonetheless, this is able to come at the price of barely decreasing their peak exit velocity.
On the alternative finish of the spectrum, an athlete with spectacular bat to ball abilities who not often swings and misses however exhibits abnormally low exit velocities would possibly profit from utilizing a bat with a barely larger MOI. This athlete has a little bit extra room to swing and miss. However with the next MOI bat, his batted balls could have elevated exit velocity and develop into extra useful.
One other concept stemming from golf is to let the scenario dictate the gear. A golfer holds fourteen golf equipment of their bag, which means that, given the scenario, there are fourteen totally different implements to select from to maximise the chance at success. Sooner or later, if we’re in a position to develop correlations from a bat’s MOI to its batted ball traits, you would possibly really see hitters swinging totally different bats in several conditions.
For instance, it’s a tie ball sport, backside of the ninth, runner on third, lower than 2 outs, and the infield is taking part in in. The purpose may be very clear: get the runner house and also you win the sport. If a participant produces the next common launch angle whereas utilizing a bat with the next MOI in comparison with a bat with a decrease MOI, then the next MOI bat could be a good selection right here.
This is only one instance of many, contemplating what we all know already. To provide one other instance, as talked about above, a decrease MOI bat would enhance a hitter’s bat velocity, thus reducing time to contact. If this hitter had been dealing with a excessive velocity pitcher, the decreased time to contact and added adjustability would profit the hitter.
The hope is that sooner or later we’ll observe golf’s lead and use a hitter’s distinctive swing traits to hone in on probably the most optimum bat suggestions.
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Written by Richard Prigatano – Hitting Coach