Among the most essential elements of baseball are the bats; needless to say, we can’t think of baseball without them. There have been a number of manufacturers that lay claim to being the best wooden baseball bat maker in the market. They use varieties of wood (ash, birch, hickory, maple, etc.) and other materials (like bamboo), or a combination of any of them (called “composite”), to make baseball bats that cater to the preferences of every slugger out there.
Over the decades, these wood bat manufacturers have been perfecting the art (and maybe science) of making wooden bats to ensure top performance. While there’s a lot of choice for wooden baseball bats out there, it’s only natural that some brands are better than others in this category.
If you’re on the lookout for the best wood baseball bat for yourself or someone you know, it’s best to find out who’s providing the top options out there. Following are the top wood bat manufacturers one should consider in such a search:
1. Hillerich & Bradsby (aka Louisville Slugger bat)
Just recently, Hillerich & Bradsby has sold its Louisville Slugger division to Wilson Sporting Goods. But to a lot of knowledgeable baseball players and fans, the company’s name will be forever tied to its legendary baseball bat.
In 1884, a baseball player named John “Bud” Hillerich hand-crafted his first wooden bat at his father’s woodworking shop. Since then, there have been over a hundred million wood bats sold, which is indeed an amazing feat. Passionate baseball fans and players would also remember that Louisville Slugger is the official bat of Major League Baseball (MLB).
Many of the baseball’s legendary sluggers have swung Louisville Slugger’s wooden bats. These players include the likes of Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, and Ty Cobb. The Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory in downtown Louisville, Kentucky, ensures that the legacy of this famous wooden bat is preserved and remembered.
Marucci’s name has been synonymous with quality sports equipment and gear, which include baseball gear such as hand-crafted wood bats. The company also specializes in customizing wooden bats for players of all ages and skill levels.
Marucci’s expertise in making baseball equipment is no surprise, as it was founded by Kurt Ainsworth and Joe Lawrence. These are both retired baseball players who used to suit for the Major League Baseball. Not surprisingly, Marucci’s wooden bats have also been widely used by baseball stars.
Among the most popular Marucci series of wooden bats are the Pro Model, Pro Cut, and RBI options. There are other series to choose from as well, as serious baseball players have several unique preferences for their hitting practices.
3. Baum Bat
Baum Bat may be a comparatively younger brand, but it has proven itself to be more than just a competitive wooden bat maker. In fact, Baum Bat may have been the first company to introduce a composite wooden bat.
Steve Baum, the late founder of this company, used to be a boat builder who had perfected his craft of building wooden boats that retained their natural aesthetic. What’s more, his boats also used the latest in technology and design that made them even more durable than their fiberglass counterparts.
Later on, Baum saw baseball players trading in traditional wood bats for bats made of other materials. This situation turned out to be a golden opportunity for him. He began to make bats using the updated technology that he had previously applied in building boats. The result was the first-ever composite wooden bat, which promised to be more durable than the traditional versions. The experiment delivered successfully then and continues in the same vein to this day. Overall, this invention was quite a revolutionary turn in the history of baseball bats.
Since then, Baum Bat has been recognized as the company that makes premium composite wood bats. Many players have highly rated Baum Bat for its durability and its ability to give a very balanced swing.
This Osaka, Japan-based company is known for its premium sports gear, including baseball gear. Mizuno is known for making high-quality baseball gear, which includes baseball bats made from different types of wood. The types here are mostly ash, maple, bamboo, and composite wood.
Mizuno’s baseball bats are considered some of the finest in the business. The “pop” and performance that these bats bring are unequaled and guarantees to boost your confidence each time you step on the home plate.
DeMarini is a Hillsboro, Oregon-based company that is now operating under Wilson Sporting Goods. The company is known for its composite baseball and softball bats, especially the CF series bats. However, DeMarini won’t be left behind when it comes to wood bats, especially as t specializes in maple composite bats.
Apart from the high-grade materials and their durability, another great aspect of DeMarini’s wooden bats is that they carry unbelievable warranties. Considering the fact that most wood bats have no warranty at all, this is an especially reassuring factor when we’re looking for the best batting experience.
You cannot deny the power of popular branding, especially when it comes to a company like Rawlings. With a legacy of history, legacy, and premium sports gear such as baseball products, you can always rely on Rawlings. Its name, legacy, and logo have virtually become a part of the American baseball culture.
As for their wood bats, Rawlings is primarily known for its Big Stick. This has long been the benchmark of their wood bats. However, more subsequent series like VELO has also made a huge mark and are yet another boon to Rawlings’ popularity in the wood bats department. A length-to-weight ratio is one of the most important aspects when choosing a baseball bat. With Rawlings’ VELO wood bat, you are assured of its specific length-to-weight ratio which ensures a successful batting every time.
Easton is also one of the best-known baseball bat manufacturers. It’s a great favorite for baseball players in all manner of leagues. There are several models of Easton bats on the market right now, with all of them promising stellar performance for the long term.
This company was founded in 1922 by Doug Easton, and was originally a manufacturer of bows and arrows. They also started experimenting with aluminum in traditional sporting equipment. This led to their introduction of baseball bats in the year 1969. In 1999, Easton began their venture into wooden bat territory. They also acquired a wooden bat manufacturer by the name of Stix Baseball, Inc.
there are several technologies included in Easton wooden bats, including Integrated Matrix or MX technology and Carbon Nanotune or CNT technology. The price range of the bats is around $40 to $500, so it’s evident that there’s a bat for every playing level.
Victus Sports was founded in 2012 by Ryan Engrof, Allan Donato, and Jared Smith. Based in Pennsylvania, this company was the result of a dissatisfaction with the quality of bats available for amateur baseball leagues. With Donato already owning his own bat company, the other two joined hands in order to make a better product with high-quality wood.
Victus is another company that gives its baseball-loving client base a large variety of options. There are several color choices as well as options for material. Customers have a choice between birch, maple, or ash when choosing the best wooden bat. They can even personalize their chosen bat with sticker graphics and their name.
Each Victus bat is hand-crafted, so we have to wait a few weeks for our order if we choose this company. Once we do get our hands on that wooden bat, though, we can be sure of an excellent performance, fast colors, and a reassuring traditional feel.
Axe bats are known for their non-traditional design, especially the unique knob and the hitting surface with just one side. Pro players are now paying attention to these bats and are using these tapered models for enhanced power and speed. The cupped end in some of the Axe bats is great for giving a balanced swing to each player.
These bats have also received a lot of media attention, as they’ve been used in the Boston Red Sox dugout and the Major Leagues as well. The ergonomic design makes for overall better control, a stable grip, and better power transfer. What’s more, using these bats may also result in fewer hand injuries.
10. Old Hickory
Old Hickory provides custom-made wooden baseball bats and is appreciated by many pro players. Mike Trout is one of the most famous patrons of this company, though anyone can get their customized bat from this brand too. We can choose the handle color, barrel color, and also add our name to our customized Old Hickory bat.
What’s even better is that customers can choose from a variety of woods, including Yellow Birch, Rock maple, and Northern White Ash. Every choice is fairly safe, as Old Hickory only makes use of top grade woods. However, as each bat is handmade, the order will take some time to process. the wait will be more than worth it, as we’re assured of getting a top-notch bat that’s made specifically according to our requirements.
The main advantages of Old Hickory bats are their extensive sanding, the high-quality materials, and their customization options. However, there are some readymade bats in stock for urgent orders. The details of the selection are on the Old Hickory website. There are also several hundred patterns on file to choose from in case we get confused.
When you’re on the lookout for the perfect wooden bat, there are several companies that can cater to your preferences. However, the names we’ve discussed above are undoubtedly the best in the business. looking at online reviews, pictures, and other details will also help a passionate baseball player to find the right bat for themselves. If you’re looking for a wooden bat for someone close to you, choosing one from the brands above is a safe bet.