Rule 1-3-2: “Effective January 1, 2012 the bat, which may be a wood or non-wood product shall be a smooth implement, from the top of the cap to the top of the knob. All non-wood bats shall meet the Batted Ball Coefficient of Restitution (BBCOR) performance standard, and such bats shall be labeled with a silkscreen or other permanent certification mark.”

What in the world does that mean?

Over the years, bat manufacturers have improved the performance of composite and aluminum bats by engineering a thinner wall around the barrel. Their goal was to increase the “trampoline effect”, and they were very successful.  Bats had turned into rocket launchers and balls were flying out of the park at record rates.  The safety of pitchers and infielders had become a big concern. To combat this issue, the BBCOR test was adopted as a new standard.  To obtain the BBCOR certification new aluminum and composite bats must now perform similar to a one piece all-wood bat in a lab test. As a result, more and more players are switching to wood bats.  After all, it’s what the players at the very highest level are using.

Are Ruth bats legal without the BBCOR stamp?

Absolutely.  Since Ruth bats are an all-wood one piece construction they do not need BBCOR certification.  Ruth bats are legal to use in high school and college wood bat leagues without the BBCOR stamp.