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Concord Little League, Inc.

Bats

We at Concord Little League believe that one of the most important factors in a young player's enjoyment for the game is his or hers success at the plate.  

Besides proper training in the art and science for hitting a baseball, the bat itself plays a big role.  Choosing the right Baseball Bat is crucial.   As a rule of thumb, we suggest the lightest bat of a given length that you can afford.  The high-tech alloys in the lightest bats cost the most, while inexpensive bats made from cheaper aluminum, which requires thicker walls for strength, are heavier.    "Performance of the bat goes up as the walls are thinned down in aluminum bats.  High-strength alloys allow the walls to be thinned while retaining strength needed for durability."  


"Length-to-weight ratio" is perhaps the most important factor in buying a bat.  This is a negative number denoting the amount of ounces the bat weighs less than the amount of inches of its length.   For example, a 30-inch bat that weighs 20 ounces is a -10.    
T-ball, Coach pitch, Machine pitch, Minors & Majors shall not be more than thirty-three (33) inches in length nor more than two and one-quarter (2¼) inches in diameter. Non-wood bats shall be labeled with a BPF (bat performance factor) of 1.15 or less

Intermediate  shall not be more than 34 inches in length; nor more than 2 5/8 inches in diameter, and if wood, not less than fifteen-sixteenths (15/16) inches in diameter (7/8 inch for bats less than 30”) at its smallest part.
JR's & SR's  shall not be more than 36 inches in length, nor more than 2 5/8 inches in diameter, and if wood, not less than fifteen-sixteenths (15/16) inches in diameter (7/8 inch for bats less than 30") at its smallest part.

We have attached a chart showing the proper length of bat for your players height & weight.  
 As always, if you have any further questions, please contact a CLL board member.
 

Please remember all bats must be USA Certified 

Gloves

GLOVE BUYING GUIDE
In baseball and softball, a fielding glove is one of the most important tools you’ll need to become a successful player. In a lot of ways, it’s the final piece to that spectacular diving catch in the outfield or what you need to stop that line drive down the third base line. Not all gloves are created equal in terms of size and material. What size baseball glove or softball glove you should use largely depends on the position you play, but there are also other factors that help determine exactly which glove you should equip yourself with.

GUIDELINES FOR SELECTING A GLOVE
We’ve already mentioned that the best glove for you depends on which position you play. But there are other factors as well:

  • Pocket size - The pocket size of an outfielder’s glove is bigger than that of a middle infielder, allowing outfielders to catch fly balls with more ease. Shortstops and second baseman usually have a shallower pocket, which allows them to get the ball out of the glove quicker, especially on double plays.
  • Webbing - There are different types of webbings found in gloves for baseball and softball players including, but not limited to: I-web, Basket web, Closed web, Single Post web, Dual Post web, Modified Trapeze web, and Trapeze web. The type of webbing most common for infielders contains a looser stitch which gives more control in hopes of getting the ball out quicker - it also doesn’t pick up large clumps of dirt with it. Traditionally, there are eight different kinds of webbings to choose from:

        Closed Web   Dual Post Web         Modified Trapeze Web Trapeze Web                                       

 

                          Single Post Web             Two-Piece Closed Web    Basket Web      I-Web

    • Padding - Padding preference is another thing to consider. The amount of padding you have on your glove depends on the position you play. Catcher’s mitts feature more padding to protect their hands from pitchers’ throws. Other positions, such as first and third base, may also need more padding. Recently, the popularity of extra wrist padding has grown, especially at the corner infield positions.
    • Wrist Adjustments - Some gloves are made with wrist adjustments that allow players to make the glove fit snug to their hand, allowing them to put on and take off the glove with ease. These can either be Velcro, a buckle system, laced, or a D-ring fastener.
    • Material - Gloves can be made of many different types of materials including leather, synthetic materials, mesh, and treated leather. Leather is the preferred material among players due to their durability and comfort. Players may opt for treated leather gloves which is pre-conditioned with oils for quicker break in period. Some prefer a mesh backed glove for a lighter glove. For younger players, a synthetic glove is good it's the lightest and most inexpensive glove available.


      Baseball Gloves
      Certain positions require a baseball glove with a particular webbing. Check out the list below for common webbings you'll find for each position:

      • Outfielders - H-web, modified trapeze or trapeze - bigger, deeper pockets
      • Middle infielders - I-web, single post, 2-piece closed - stay shallow
      • 3rd basemen - dual post, modified trapeze, closed webs - stronger, deeper pockets
      • Pitcher - basket, 2-piece closed, one-piece closed, modified trapeze - conceal stitches when selecting a pitch


      Fastpitch Gloves
      Like baseball gloves, positions in fastpitch softball require a specific webbing:

      • Middle infielders, first base, and some outfielders – open web that allows for quicker transfer to throwing hand
      • Pitchers, third base, and some outfielders – closed web that provides more support for outfielders and shields ball in pitchers glove

      DIFFERENCES BETWEEN GLOVES BY POSITION
      One of the most important things to keep in mind when it comes to buying a glove is the different styles and types you can choose from. With each glove, you will have different types of webs and pockets, and the choice of the best glove for you depends on the position you play.

      The charts below show an estimate of the size range of the glove for a specific player for both baseball and softball:

      BASEBALL GLOVE SIZING CHART BY POSITION

      AGE CATCHER FIRST BASE SECOND BASE / SHORT STOP THIRD BASE PITCHER OUTFIELD
      UNDER 7 29.5 - 30" 11.5" 8-10.5" 8-10.5" 8-10.5" 9-11"
      8 - 10 30-32" 11.5-12" 10.5-11.25" 10.5-11.5" 10.5-11.5" 10-12"
      11 - 13 31-.32.5" 12-13" 11.25-12" 11.75-12.5" 11.5-12.5" 11.75-12.5"
      OVER 14 33-35" 12-13" 11.5-12.5" 11.75-12.5" 11.5-12.5" 12-13"


      SLOWPITCH SOFTBALL GLOVE SIZING CHART BY POSITION

      FIRST BASE SECOND BASE / SHORTSTOP THIRD BASE PITCHER OUTFIELD
      12-13" 11.5-12.5" 11.75-13" 11.5-13" 12-15"


      YOUTH VS. ADULT GLOVES
      A youth glove is designed for younger players with smaller hands. They are typically cheaper than the adult gloves and are much easier to close. The youth gloves are not made of the same high quality leather, but the materials they are made of make them easier to close. Youth gloves have smaller, narrower fingers and should be used for a player under 10 years old. They sometimes can be used for a player up to 12 years old, but after then, kids should be using adult gloves. To fit an adult glove onto a younger player’s hand, the back of the wrist can be tightened. This is done on softball gloves with a Velcro strap, but on baseball gloves, the glove needs a minor re-lacing. The picture below shows the difference of how a tightened glove looks compared to a non-adjusted one.

Helmets

HELMET BUYING GUIDE

baseball-and-softball-batting-helmet-buying-guide

When it comes to buying protective gear for baseball or softball, no piece is more important than a helmet. Each manufacturer makes high and low end helmets and each will protect you, but it is important to choose the right helmet for your level of play. Majority of the helmets are approved by NOCSAE (National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment) which is the safety regulator for helmets.

The materials that a helmet is made out of will be determined by the price of the helmet. High end helmets are made with high impact padding for energy absorption as well as soft padding for comfort. Basic helmets typically only have the bulky soft padding that absorbs impacts. These helmets may be the best choice for younger players, since they will be more comfortable and more likely to fit since the padding expands and contracts significantly. For players at high levels of play, such as high school and beyond, it is important to get a helmet with a form of high density foam to prevent injuries.

The majority of helmets come with two ear flaps, but it is possible to get the one ear flap helmets that the professionals wear. These helmets are only recommended for high levels of play where age and experience can help prevent injury from the missing ear. By having one less ear flap, the player can hear everything better as well as having a lighter helmet. If you do choose a one eared helmet, it is important to make sure that if you are a right handed batter, the left ear is covered and if you are a left handed batter, the right ear is covered.

Sizing
Finding the right size helmet can be as easy as trying on every helmet in the store and then choosing the most comfortable. For most people, this isn’t practical or possible. To properly measure your head for the correct size, use fabric measuring tape to measure around the circumference of your head slightly above your ears. The following chart will help convert your measurement to a hat size.

baseball-softball-batting-helmet-sizing-chart

When you have the batting helmet, it is important to make sure the helmet is snug but not uncomfortably tight. It is also crucial to make sure the helmet is not too big. To test this, put the helmet on and shake your head from side to side quickly; if the helmet moves separately from your head, it is too big. You may need a smaller size helmet or a padding fit kit. A fit kit will make the helmet smaller by adding extra pads to the inside of the helmet. These fit kits are usually brand specific but can be easily cut to fit in any shape helmet. One thing to remember is to never purchase a bigger helmet to grow into. Your head does not grow much past age 10. The danger of a helmet that is too big is that the helmet will move around on the head and lead to an injury.

how-to-tell-if-a-baseball-or-softball-helmet-fits-correctly

The proper way to wear a helmet is to have the brim pulled down to the forehead, so that it is parallel to the ground. If it is too high up, it exposes your forehead and eyes. If it is too low, it will cover your eyes and expose the base of the back of your head. For pony tails, some helmets have a slot along the padding to allow extra room in the helmet for better comfort with a pony tail.

how-to-choose-the-right-softball-batting-helmet-face-mask-and-cage

Face Masks and Cages
The common way to buy a helmet with a cage is to buy the two separately. Majority of helmets have a matching face mask that easily attaches to the helmet without modification. The different shapes and styles of helmets from different manufacturers make it difficult for a face mask to fit on more than one helmet. Face masks are easy to attach with only a few screws. It is recommended that players that wear face masks on their helmet also wear chin straps. This prevents the helmet from moving around when the player is running.


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