Best Wood For Baseball Bats

A baseball bat is a sports equipment used in the sports baseball by a batter to hit a ball thrown by a pitcher.  Ever since the game was first invented in 1876 up to when metal baseball bats were created in the 1920s, players have used baseball bats made out of different wood. Many people still prefer playing baseball as it was initially intended, with a baseball bat made of wood.

From children playing in their backyards to adults having Sunday get-togethers, baseball has become an avid activity. This sport is enjoyed by all age groups and has been popular in many countries, especially the USA. Throughout the sport’s growth, people have still not outgrown the feel of a wooden baseball bat hitting a ball.

However, choosing a baseball bat is not only about choosing between wood and metal, but you should know just which kind of wood is the best wood for baseball bats to enjoy the sports fully. Read below all you need to know about the best wood for baseball bats.

How Wood Baseball Bats Are Made

To achieve the best baseball bat, a 40-50 year old tree is harvested into long cores called billets, which then pass through a high-speed lathe that trims down the wood until the desired features are reached. With the help of technology and computer-driven programs, a baseball bat can be manufactured in 50 seconds.

The deciding factor of a baseball bat’s strength is the amount of grain in the wood, and batters would often seek to hit the ball with the side of the bat that has the most grain, as that is where the bat is the strongest.

Characteristics Of A Wood Baseball Bat

The wood baseball bat has several different features that you should be aware of:

  • Knob: the uppermost part of the bat which can either be standard, tapered, cone, or ax shaped.
  • Grip: also known as the bat’s handle, which is around 18 inches in length. The thicker the grip, the stronger the bat.
  • Taper: The area of the bat after the grip increases in thickness as you go along, and this area is the weakest part of the bat.
  • Barrel: also referred to as the “sweet spot.” This part is the hardest part of the bat and the best place to make contact with the ball.
  • End: the end of the bat can either be a full end or a cupped end.

5 Types Of Wood Baseball Bats:

The quality of a baseball bat can differ depending on what kind of wood you use. Let’s see what kind of wood is the best wood for baseball bats.



Ashwood is the most common and traditional wood used to make baseball bats. Due to its high flexibility, it is preferred by some batters over maple wood as it allows them to “whip” the ball with more speed. Ash is also one of the least expensive types of wood bat.

However, ash is also quick to dry up, causing the bat to flake and splinter after some time, making it somewhat undesirable in the long run.



Maple baseball bats were introduced around 20 years ago and have taken the baseball world by storm. Maple wood is harder and denser than ash, and although it does not have the flexibility that ash wood does, it is barely noticeable.

On the other hand, maple is prone to absorbing moisture, making the bat heavy. This makes it undesirable in humid areas.



Birch is a softer wood that makes it more flexible, almost similar to ash wood. Unlike ash, birch is sturdier, like maple, making it less likely to flake and splinter. Birch, in other words, contains the best qualities of both ash and maple.

The softness of the birch does make it more prone to dents. Birch also requires a bit of breaking in to harden, so it can not be used right out of the box.



Hickory was one of the first woods to be used to make baseball bats and is harder and denser than any other wood bat. This hardness makes it durable and allows the batter to achieve high exit velocity.

This hardness is also its Achilles’ heel, making it heavier and hence, challenging to hit high-speed pitches.



Although rare, baseball bats made of bamboo can be pretty helpful. Bamboo bats are made by pressing bamboo strips together into billets. Bamboo is increasingly durable and flexible.

However, as bamboo baseball bats are not a single-piece construction, they have not been approved for play in all leagues.

What To Look For When Buying A Baseball Bat

You should always buy a wood baseball bat that fits your body type and style of hitting. A thick handle is best for people with fatter hands. People with long arms should go for a bat with a good taper and high flexibility to make full use of bat speed. The most important things to look at are the knob and handle, which is the region you will have your hands on.

Our Final Thoughts

Although the design of the bat you choose would depend on your requirements and needs, the type of wood you choose should not be compromised. The above-mentioned types of wood bats are all excellent choices, but only one of the types of wood excels above all others and is worthy of being called the best wood for baseball bats.

Maple bats have emerged and taken over the baseball community in the last 20 years for a reason. The sturdiness and durability of the maple wood, along with its hardness that does not make it too heavy, makes maple baseball bats the most optimal choice for players. Although other wood species have their benefits, maple is chosen by players due to its performance.

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