Knowing “how to hold a baseball bat” is a must for any baseball player or a beginner.
To anyone, this fundamental question may seem to be pretty simple and easy, but in reality, it is not. It requires proper technique to hold a baseball bat correctly.
In baseball, one cannot just pick up the bat and swing it; there is a correct way to hold it and have a proper bat angle to achieve a good swing. Proper grip is an essential factor for any player to improve their game.
A firm grip ensures a solid strike when in contact with the ball. It also increases batting speed and helps the players to play freely in the game.
Correct Way To Hold A Baseball Bat
To hold a baseball bat correctly, one must keep in mind these steps:
- Place the bat’s handle in your bottom hand and end on the ground in front of your lead foot. If you’re right-handed, your left hand will be your bottom hand, and your left foot will be your lead foot.
- Wrap the index finger of your bottom hand around the bat. Wrap the bottom 3 fingers of your bottom hand separately from the index finger.
- Hold the bat in your fingers, not in the palm of your hand.
- Grip the handle with your top hand in a similar way we held it in the bottom hand. The handle should be in your fingers.
- The knuckles of the top hand should line up with the knuckles of the bottom hand.
- After having the correct grip, the next thing to keep in mind is to keep it as light as possible for a better swing.
If the grip on the bat is light when the swing progresses, the grip will automatically tighten and will be tightest when it hits the ball.
After knowing how to hold a baseball bat appropriately, we now need to know at what angle one must keep their bat for a proper swing. Depending on the player, the bat angles change.
The 3 central angles at which the players generally position their bats are:
Perpendicular to the ground: The bat in this position is kept straight up and down. This adds a little loop in the swing. In this position, it takes a little longer for the back part to hit the ball, which adds more space to hit the ball, thereby giving it more power.
Parallel to the ground: The bat in this position lies flat. This gives a direct path to the ball. In this position, the power generated is less than the perpendicular because the distance is less.
At a slanted angle: Most players prefer keeping their bats at a slanted angle from the ground (somewhere between perpendicular and parallel to the ground). It entirely depends on each player’s technique and comfort level.
Box Grip vs. Door Knocker Grip
Apart from knowing the bat angles, a player should be aware of the 2 baseball bat-holding grips: the box grip and door knocking grip.
|DOOR KNOCKER GRIP
|The player must line up the fingers’ flat parts in
|In this method, the player must align each hand’s first knuckles.
|This way of holding the bat forms a box shape
where both pairs of knuckles form the side of the box.
|In this grip, the knuckles line up vertically on
the handle, forming the shape of a fist that resembles knocking on a door.
|It is the most commonly used grip, which generates the most power from your swing.
|It keeps the bat handle closer to the fingertips and gives much control.
Bat Grip Tape
The players often use grip tapes/ bat tapes to have a better grip on the bat.
Recently, it has become a very commonly used accessory by players. Bat tapes not only add to the appearance of the bats but also provide comfort to the players holding them.
It is more common to see grip tapes used on metal bats than wooden bats. Regular athletic or lizard skin grip tape can wrap up the bat. Check out more about Baseball.
The bat’s sweet spot is located around the midpoint of the barrel, where the bat is the fattest. These are considered the best spots for hitting baseballs.
Players wrap the tape around the sweet spot of a wooden bat to increase its life. It keeps the bat intact. A player cannot use a bat wrapped like this during a match, but it is excellent for practice.
Pine tar is a brownish–black colored, sticky substance made from pine trees, used to provide a better grip to the players. It is majorly applied to wooden bats.
Pine tar is legal to use in Major League Baseball, but under some conditions. Players can apply pine tar only on the lower 18 inches of the bat. So it is better to check the rules and regulations before the match.
Pine tar can be applied to the bats in 2 ways:
- Its liquid form is first applied on a rag and then rubbed on the bat.
- It also comes in a stick form that can be directly applied to the bat.
Perfect Baseball Bat For Beginners
For a beginner, choosing the right bat is as important as learning how to hold the bat. Many things should be considered while choosing the right bat, such as weight, length, and material.
While choosing a bat, one should not focus on the heaviest or the longest bat; one should find a bat that is ideal for them.
Baseball bats come in different materials, like, alloy, composite, and wood. An alloy bat is preferred for beginners as it is durable, sturdy, and affordable.
Wooden bats are used in tournaments because they don’t generate as much power, which is why it is a regulation in MLB. Because of their lack of power, wooden bats help you learn the fundamental skills of baseball.
What side do you hold a baseball bat on?
The end of the baseball bat should be on the ground in front of your lead foot.
For a right-handed player, his lead foot will be the left foot, and vice-versa.
Should I hold the bat tight or loose?
After holding the bat properly, the player should keep the grip loose.
As the swing progresses, the grip automatically tightens when the ball comes in contact with the bat.
Why do my hands hurt when I bat?
Players often go through painful stings while batting due to poorly hit balls. This is due to the vibrations caused when the bat hits the ball.
When a ball is poorly hit, the vibrations travel from the bat to the player’s hand, and if this occurs multiple times, it causes a sting in the player’s hands.
Is holding a baseball bat easier for a left-hander?
A left-handed hitter has some advantages over a right-hand hitter, which makes it easier for them in baseball.
Left-hand hitters see the pitch from the opposite side of the mound, which is an advantage for them.
Pitchers often have less experience throwing to left-handed batters.
Overall, it is not easier for a left-handed hitter to hold the bat; it has some advantages over right-handed batters.
Which grip should I use?
The most preferred grip is the box grip. Grip the handle with both hands, and hold it lightly. The strongest position is when your bottom hand faces down while the top hand faces up. The hands should be kept parallel to the ground.