Many sports are watched and enjoyed around the world, and some of them have spread far beyond their homelands to become global sports. This includes golf (originating in Scotland), baseball (popular in Japan as well as its native North America), soccer, and more. Many of these sports call for specialized gear, from the balls to the athlete’s jerseys to helmets, tennis racquets, and more. Baseball, and its variants such as softball, are known for metal and wooden bats, little white balls, oversized catcher’s mitts, and more. Any baseball or softball player, amateur or pro, casual or serious, needs the right bats and balls for the sport, and they can be found at nearly any sporting goods store.
The bats, in particular, can be modified to alter their performance for the better. Doctored bats, such as rolled softball bats or shaved slowpitch softball bats, can be used in casual games or during practice so their users can strike a ball further. An interested bat owner may approach a softball bat shaving and rolling service, but care should be taken when making or using rolled softball bats or shaved bats. These rolled softball bats are not allowed in official gameplay, nor are shaved bats, but they may be a fine choice for practice or casual games. How does this work?
Making Rolled Softball Bats
A baseball bat can be either made of wood, typically ash wood, or made out of hollow metal. Traditional baseball bats are indeed the wood variant, and they still prove popular today. When a wooden baseball bat is first used, that bat has not yet reached its peak performance, but it may be broken in as the player strikes balls with it. The impact will break and stretch natural fibers in the wood, and after a few hundred strikes, the bat is more flexible and can hit a ball further. Such bats are fully broken in, and may be prized in a player’s collection. But during practice, even a fine baseball bat runs the risks of getting damaged, so rolled softball bats may be used as a proxy.
What does this mean? If someone wants rolled softball bats, they can take a fresh wooden bat to a rolling service, and allow that bat to run through some rollers. Those rollers will artificially induce the same effect as hitting balls with that bat, speeding up the breaking-in process. This results in a new bat that performs like a seasoned bat in very little time. Such bats can be recognized on sight, however, and players are not recommended to use them during official games. But for practice sessions, these rolled bats can be great proxies for a proper wooden bat, mimicking their performance on the field. That, and such rolled softball bats may be used for casual games where league rules and regulations are not enforced.
Using a Shaved Bat
What about metal baseball bats? Rolling them won’t have the same effect as rolling a wooden bat, so instead, a player may have metal bats shaved to boost their performance. Metal bats are hollow inside and have padding in their bodies, reinforcing them and making them more flexible. But a metal bat’s performance is enhanced, as in it strikes a ball further, after being shaved.
A metal bat may have its end cap removed, and this bat is placed on a lathe table and held in the assembly. A grinder will be inserted into the bat’s interior and shave away a few ounces of material, but care should be taken so not too much material is removed. If too much material is shaved away, or if the handle gets shaved instead of the body, the bat may become fragile and even break during use. Such shaved bats should not be used in temperatures lower than 65 degrees Fahrenheit, or else they might suffer during use. And these shaved bats are not allowed in legal and official games, but they might be popular for casual games or practice sessions. After a bat is shaved, its end cap will be fitted back on, and the bat is ready for use.