To all WBL parents,
The WBL would like to give everyone a heads up that new Babe Ruth and Ripken regulations will render most every bat you own non-compliant as of January 1, 2018. The current bat your child uses will not be allowed next season. We realize the new bat standard is not a welcome expense for the upcoming season, but it was created to make the game safer, and in order for the WBL to participate in the Babe Ruth and Ripken programs, all bats used for the 2018 season must comply with the new rule.
Babe Ruth created a table showing how the various leagues are affected: https://www.baberuthleague.org/bat-rules.aspx
Our WBL leagues correspond to the Babe Ruth leagues as follows:
- Kindergarten and 1st grade Leagues = T-Ball (bats 27” and smaller only, 28” bats fall into Cal Ripken Baseball)
- 2nd, 3rd, 4th, Majors, International Leagues = Cal Ripken Baseball
- Pony league = Babe Ruth Baseball 13-15
The current list of approved bats can be found here:
This site is updated as bats are approved, so be sure to check it before purchasing a new bat.
Simply put, any bat being used now (except wood bats, T-Ball bats 27” and smaller, and BBCOR .50 bats used in Pony and 13+ travel leagues) will not be able to be used in our program beginning Jan 1, 2018.
The new “USA Baseball” stamped bats are detuned compared to existing bats (meaning balls leave the USA Baseball bat at a lower velocity.) The new bat barrels are 2-5/8 inches (big barrel) as opposed to the current 2-1/4 inch. This extra barrel size should be better for contact especially with the younger players. More contact means more balls in play. For our travel program players, we anticipate that each league we participate in (USABL, NPGL, SPFBL, etc.) will adopt the same bat regulations as Babe Ruth and Ripken. Some non-Ripken or Babe Ruth tournaments may allow the old bats or a non- stamped bat and in such cases it is best to check with the tournament organizers.
The new “USA Baseball” bats are available at retailers beginning this month. As there are no “last season” models available at discount, expect that retailers will sell all new bats at MSRP/list pricing.