The different materials used for baseball bats each provide their own unique characteristics, slightly changing the players’ performance and how they play the game. 

Knowing the differences and benefits can help players understand the history of the game and how the construction of their bat directly affects how they play.

In general, MLB bats are made from wood, but even among these bats, there may be different types of wood in their construction. High school or collegiate play, on the other hand, may use composites. 

Understand the equipment you use and how it can enhance or inhibit your skills.

White Ash

These types of wood bats are among the most common you’ll find players using. Manufacturers harvest this wood from the northern parts of Pennsylvania and New York. 

The ubiquity of white ash comes from its all-around good quality; the wood offers significant strength, durability, and manageable weight. White ash bats represent the standard for wood bats, serving as the baseline by which players compare all other wooden bats.


Hickory is a heavy material that gives wooden bats constructed from it more heft. This has the advantage of providing more power behind every swing, so long as the hitter has the strength to utilize it correctly. 

Players with less arm strength will see their hits suffer as a result and their stance will become unbalance and shaky. This greater weight makes hickory a more specialized material that’s favored by stronger hitters who prefer strength over speed.


Since their inception, maple bats were considered unsuitable for serious play due to the unreasonable weight of the material. 

In recent years, new bat-making techniques have given maple bats renewed popularity by lowering the moisture content of the wood, thus reducing the weight. 

They may not be as versatile as white ash or as specialized as hickory, but maple bats do provide enhanced durability, increasing their longevity.


First invented in the 1970s, aluminum bats offer a much different batting experience to wooden ones. Due to the metal material, these bats are lighter but pack more strength behind every swing. 

Over the years, the specific materials used for aluminum bats have improved, resulting in BBCOR bats, but their performance-enhancing qualities also prevent them from professional play. At every level except the pros, aluminum bats see widespread play.

Find the Bat That Suits You

Knowing the different materials for baseball bats gives you the opportunity to adjust your play style and experiment with different factors. 

Whether you play in an amateur league or on your high school team, give yourself the best equipment possible to perform at your best.


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