Little League International has imposed an indefinite moratorium on the use of composite bats (a bat with a metal shell, but a woven composite of
fibers on the inside of the barrel portion) in its Junior, Senior, and Big League Baseball Divisions, effective immediately. Not covered under the Little League moratorium are wood bats, metal
bats, or bats that have composite materials in the handle only.
The moratorium closely follows a similar moratorium approved in July 2010 by the National Federation of High School Associations (NFHS), based on a recommendation from its Baseball Rules Committee. The NFHS Board enacted a rule to prohibit the use of composite bats until they can produce consistent compliance with the standards through the life of the bat.
The California Interscholastic Federation also recently banned composite bats and
all metal bats for use in high school baseball in California must now meet the Batted Ball Coefficient of Restitution Test Performance Standard (BBCOR), intended to ensure that metal bats react more like wood bats, which was originally scheduled to take effect in 2012.
Waivers of the moratorium will be considered by Little League International in certain circumstances. For 2011, a manufacturer may apply for a waiver of the moratorium for a particular model of composite bat if all of the requirements for a waiver, as established by Little League International, are satisfied.
Composite bats that are certified by an approved independent testing laboratory as meeting the current Ball Exit Speed Ratio (BESR), and the Accelerated Break-In (ABI) procedure will be eligible for the waiver in 2011. Little League International will provide a list of bat models, if any, that receive waivers of the moratorium.
Currently, the moratorium on composite bats does not apply to the Little League Baseball (Majors) Division and below, nor to any division of softball. Little League International, in consultation with independent experts, anticipates being able to provide local league constituents clear direction regarding composite bats in the Little League Baseball (Majors) 12-and-under divisions, prior to the start of the 2011 season.
Source: Little League International
Created September 1, 2010