Clarification of pending changes to Bat Rules
With Christmas fast approaching it is appropriate that we pass on the advice that the Rules relating to Baseball Bats will change in 2018.
The purpose of this letter is to attempt to ensure that parents do not buy bats for Christmas that become ‘illegal’ next year and have players not be able to use them. This information is about bats to
be used in the Hills local competitions.
Hills parents should not be buying bats for use in Representative Baseball. Hills will always supply bats for these teams.
The change flows from the Little League rule changes occurring in USA which become effective in the USA on 1st January 2018. In order to be consistent across the current season Hills will delay any
change until the start of the 2018/19 Season in September, 2018.
The changes in Rules will have the greatest effect on the Under 11 – Under 13 age group.
Generally, the new Rules for these ages will allow bats to be of 2 5/8” diameter which have a USA Bat licensing mark.
At this time, I would not recommend buying 2 ¼”. Some may be allowed next season with a USA bat licensing mark but these may not available for some time.
Should you be purchasing a bat for a player age 10 to 13, know that bats of 2 5/8” diameter cannot be used in Hills until September 2018.
Conversely, if you are purchasing a 2 ¼” diameter bat, it is
possible that the bat cannot be used after the current season. Having said that, next year we will be introducing a ‘phasing in period’ so as not to make all existing bats virtually illegal overnight.
NOTE: The 2 ¼” diameter Softball bats are already illegal in Hills. This will not change. People wanting to purchase bats, especially ‘on line’, should purchase Metal bats (not composite
bats), with USA Bat Licence sticker. They should purchase bats with a ‘drop weight’ (that is the difference between length and weight of the bat) that is no more than minus 11.
A bat with adifference of 12 or greater, will be ‘illegal’. There is no plan to alter the Hills Rules in relation to the banning of ‘high performance’ bats including those manufactured using composite materials.
Most 2 ¼” bats with composite materials are now banned in Little League play.
For Players playing in Under 14 or Under 15 competitions, any new bats should be 2 5/8” diameter and have a drop weight of no lighter than minus 8.
The difference between the length and weight of
the bat must not be more than 8. These bats must have a USA Bat licensing mark.
For Under 17, The Rule changes again and the legal bats are to conform with BBCOR standard. It is unlikely that the present Hills rules for Youth League will alter from wood or wood composite.
Bats for Tee Ball will remain 2 ¼” diameter.
Bats in USA will have the USA Tee Ball Bat licensing mark.
I recognise this can be confusing and I am available to answer any questions that you may have